Tag Archives: Suwannee River

Let’s stop Sabal Trail before it makes any more mistakes

Thanks to Julie Bowland for the picture of my VDT op-ed today. -jsq

jsq op-ed in VDT The same day the Sabal Trail was quoted in the VDT August 5th as saying it had done enough subsurface analysis on our fragile karst limestone topography, a sinkhole opened up next to Shiloh Road. Sabal Trail already had to move its Albany compressor station because arrowheads had been found there. The pipeline itself is a much bigger mistake: let’s stop it before it damages our property values, forests, rivers, or our people.

Spectra Energy’s paid staff are continue to assert that Sabal Trail’s proposed gouge through our fields, farms, and under our rivers will proceed according their plan to profit executives and investors in Houston, Texas.

Actually, Continue reading

Hamilton County, FL Commission considers opposing FL-DEP Sabal Trail permit 2015-07-21

Local resident Chris Mericle asked his county commission to once again oppose the Sabal Trail fracked methane pipeline, this time by opposing a permit the Florida Department of Environmental Protection proposes to issue for Sabal Trail to bore under the Suwannee River and other sovereign submerged lands and wetlands of Florida.

This time, Continue reading

Valdosta Wastewater presentation to Greenlaw, Save Our Suwannee, SRWMD, Hamilton Co., and WWALS 2015-03-17

Due to requests from Greenlaw in Atlanta and Save Our Suwannee in Florida, WWALS Watershed Coalition asked the City of Valdosta for a presentation on their wastewater situation. Valdosta presented less than two weeks later, and brought their entire hierarchy related to this issue, from the mayor on down. Plus Lowndes County, which isn’t even responsible for Valdosta’s wastewater, was represented by their Chairman and a Commissioner. Not all questions could be answered that quickly, but many were.

The slides are on the LAKE website and the videos are on the LAKE YouTube channel; see below. See also Valdosta’s Sanitary Sewer System Improvements web page.

At the meeting, clockwise from Tim Carroll (introducing), were: Continue reading

Duke Energy and Sabal Trail at Suwannee County Commission 2014-09-02

300x219 Swearing in speakers, in Duke Suwannee new turbine resolution sails through Suwannee County Commission, by John S. Quarterman, 2 September 2014 Duke Energy reps couldn’t answer any questions beyond their canned presentation, not about water use, not about their permit application to FL-PSC for a new site, and not about Sabal Trail pipeline routing. But the Suwannee County Commission passed their requested resolution anyway for a pair of new natural gas turbines.

Update 16 September 2014: Here’s video of Debra Johnson’s find:

Mr, Oxendine (chairman) announced at the end of the meeting that “they are not ignoring the Sabal Trail Pipeline and its threat to Suwannee County. Mr. Oxendine also stated “he has instructed Mr. Harris and Mr. Prevatt (County Attorney) to evaluate the situation and consider doing something similar to the other counties that have passed resolutions and ordinances against The ST pipeline in their counties.” Next meeting tomorrow night Tuesday 09-16-2014 at 6pm.

300x223 Duke application: introduction, in Duke Suwannee new turbine resolution sails through Suwannee County Commission, by John S. Quarterman, 2 September 2014 Someone (apparently county staff) introduced the Duke item in the agenda below:

for the construction of two new simple-cycle combustion turbines and associated equipment as well as a 40 by 100 administrative building. The turbines will be fueled by natural gas….

It’s Duke’s existing land plus a bit more they’ve bought.

300x222 Debra Johnson, Suwannee County resident, in Duke Suwannee new turbine resolution sails through Suwannee County Commission, by John S. Quarterman, 2 September 2014 Local resident Debra Johnson asked Duke to withdraw their plans.

Continue reading

Alternative 3: Albany, Camilla, Thomasville, Monticello, Capps FERC to Sabal Trail

Watch out Dougherty, Mitchell, and Thomas Counties Georgia, and Jefferson, Taylor, Lafayette, Suwannee, and Columbia Counties, Florida, and the Flint, Ochlockonee, Aucilla, Ecofina, Suwannee, and Santa Fe Rivers: Alternative 3 is for you! County Commissions and city councils in the county seats of Camilla, Thomasville, Monticello, Perry, Mayo, Live Oak, and Lake City may want to take action like Jefferson County already did to stop water bottling, as may Alachua, Gainesville, Ocala, Wildwood, The Villages, and Ferndale in Alachua, Marion, Sumter, and Lake Counties, Florida.

300x341 Alternative 3, in Alternative 3: Armena to Capps to FGT FERC to Sabal Trail, by John S. Quarterman, 14 September 2014 Alternative 3 in FERC’s recent instructions for Sabal Trail to “include analyses” begins like Alternative 2 near Armena, GA and goes through Albany, then veers due south.

Alternative 3 beginning at approximately MP 141 (near Albany, Georgia) and following Highway 82 to Highway 19 (Slappy Boulevard) in Albany, Georgia; then following Highway 19 through Albany, Camilla, and Thomasville, Georgia to the FGT pipeline corridor south of Capps, Florida; then following the FGT pipeline corridor to I-75 and the Alternate 1 and 2 routes to the proposed endpoint.

Here’s a very rough map of the whole route of Alternative 3, including the FGT pipeline part: Continue reading

USACE presentation online at City of Valdosta

Emily Davenport, Valdosta Stormwater Manager, sent a letter 2 June 2014 to attendees of the 6 May 2014 Army Corps of Engineers presentations, with paper materials attached, and a note that they are also online at Stormwater Division, Regional Flooding. [Not there anymore, but see updated first bullet item below. 2018-01-28 -jsq]

Study before Levee –Tim Carroll @ VCC 2014-05-06

Comment on facebook 10 May 2014 and he told me the same by telephone.

It is clear a full watershed wide study must be completed before any decisions can be made. As established in this first study—The City of Valdosta is the recipient-not the origin- of the flood waters. While it confirms what we already knew, my job is to try and keep the ball rolling forward. Engage congressional leaders, secure funding and find long term, sustainable solutions that benefit all communities within the watershed basin. A levee by itself is not the answer.
–Tim Carroll

This was a comment on Continue reading

Videos: Flooding study by Army Corps of Engineers @ VCC 2014-05-06

In these videos of the initial flooding study by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers at the Valdosta City Council Work Session, you can see they’re the Corps, all right: they want to build a levee. They did emphasize that this was just an initial study on what could be done inside Valdosta, and their main conclusion was that there was enough need to indicate federal interest, as in possibilities of getting federal funding for solutions. City Manager Larry Hanson got the Corps to confirm (several times) that Valdosta alone couldn’t stop the flooding, since the vast majority of floodwaters comes from upstream on the Withlacoochee and Little Rivers.

Later that same evening in response to citizen questions at the Valdosta City Hall Annex, the Corps clarified more that they did understand there were issues of impervious surfaces and development and loss of wetlands and they wanted to do a much larger study of the entire watershed, which could take several years to accomplish. They kept emphasizing that the Suwannee River watershed is one of the largest in the country, and there are also flooding problems on the Suwannee River, which could be important for obtaining federal dollars.

As we already knew, Valdosta has funded projects already started to move the Withlacoochee Wastewater Treatment Plant (WWTP) uphill and to add a force main to prevent manhole overflows. People downstream in Florida may be relieved to hear something is being done.

Here’s a video playlist, followed by images of the Corp’s slides and of the City Council, and some notes.

Continue reading

Sewage into the Withlacoochee again –WCTV

Although the Withlacoochee Wastewater Treatment Plant (WWTP) didn’t overflow in the rains earlier this week, and apparently not yesterday, either, there were manhole sewage overflows then and according to the Florida Department of Health there were similar overflows yesterday, from Valdosta into the Withlacoochee River.

WCTV posted yesterday a News Release: Florida Department of Health,

TALLAHASSEE- The Florida Department of Health today issued an advisory to residents in counties surrounding the Withlacoochee and the downstream Suwannee River. The City of Valdosta has reported a spill, made up of a combination of storm water and untreated sewage, that has overflowed into the One-Mile Branch, Two-Mile Branch, Sugar Creek and Cherry Creek which flow into the Withlacoochee River. Lab test results received April 18, 2014, indicate higher than normal levels of fecal coliform bacteria in the river waters.

Oddly, there doesn’t seem to be anything about this on the city of Valdosta’s own website yet, but no doubt there will be. More in later posts about what that.

-jsq

Lowndes County sewer spill may contaminate Suwannee River

WCTV went downstream to Suwannee County, Florida, to see further effects after the Valdosta PR that revealed what happened with the Lowndes County sewer leak. One of their interviewees recommends escalating this ongoing problem (first Valdosta’s Withlacoochee Wastewater Treatment Plant flooded, and now this) to the state governors’ level.

Eames Yates wrote for WCTV 27 April 2013, Suwannee River Could be Contaminated After Lowndes Sewer Spill,

Travis Luttrell also vacations in Suwannee County. He said “it’s a pretty big administrative challenge between the two governors. And is something that needs to be worked out between state to state and hopefully we can overcome the administrative challenges it might take to fix these kinds of problems.”

The Florida Department of Health also issued the advisory for Hamilton, Levy, Lafayette and Madison counties.

Here’s the WCTV video:

-jsq