The Session Beckons
Here’s one of the first action alerts of the session: Say No to Removing Regulations of Tanks Near Drinking Water Intakes
You can watch live proceedings here.
WV Public Broadcasting airs The Legislature Today on weeknights at
6 p.m. and 11 p.m. – WVPB (main channel)
The Legislature Today can also be heard at 6 p.m. weeknights on WVPB’s statewide radio network.
Appalachian Storage and Trading Hub/Petrochemical Complex (ASH)
House Speaker Roger Hanshaw introduced HB4001 on the first day of the legislative session. The bill is framed as a vehicle for kick-starting investment in the state. However, as MetroNews reports, the bill is “aimed at renewing confidence in the China deal.” DeSmog blog reports that in 2017, “China and West Virginia signed an $83.7 billion dollar, 20-year agreement to build a massive petrochemical hub.” The MOU (memorandum of understanding) signed for the “China deal” has never seen the light of day, not that we haven’t been working with our allies to try to information on that deal, as well as another scheme to allow a $1.9 billion U.S. federal loan guarantee to help build a component of ASH.
The federal loan is stalled out for now, and the China deal hasn’t moved anywhere recently, at least as far as the public knows, hence HB4001. This bill appears to involve taxpayer money in a scheme for private gain—for out-of-country corporations!
Needless to say, we will attempt to monitor this bill during the session.
For more background on ASH, please tune in today at 5 p.m. to GrassRoot Ohio Radio to hear a segment titled “PlasticPetroChem Invasion” featuring OVEC volunteer Dr. Randi Pokladnik and OVEC staff member Dustin White. You can listen live at WGRN.org and you this episode will be archived on Soundcloud here.
Also see these recent news articles that quote OVEC volunteers and staff:
Tomorrow, January 18: Special Screening of the Story of Plastic, a seething expose uncovering the ugly truth behind the current global plastic pollution crisis. Interviews with experts and activists and never-before-filmed scenes reveal the disastrous consequences of the flood of plastic smothering ecosystems and poisoning communities around the world—and the global movement rising up in response.
The screening, hosted by the Concerned Ohio River Residents, takes place in Moundsville, WV. A post-film panel discussion includes Dr. Randi Pokladnik who will talk about the impacts of plastic and petrochemicals on health and one of the ASH-related cracker plant’s impact on the Ohio River.
January 24: Radioactive Risks Posed by Oil and Gas Industry w/ Justin Nobel, at the Ohio University Eastern in Belmont County, Ohio. Also see: National Geographic writer coming to Belmont County. Justin Nobel was in extensive contact with Bill Hughes prior to Bill’s death.
January 27: Ohio River Basin Focus Group in Pittsburgh, PA
January 28: West Virginia Environmental Council’s E-Day! Stop the OVEC table. If you’d like to volunteer to help out at our table, email email@example.com. Later, come by the Empty Glass for the E-Day Green Jam.