Day #78 (late)

Lively day today! The State House News Service picked up on the Ask the Governor call from last Thursday. SHNS is not letting any part of this story slide. There have been 3 mentions of this action in 3 days.

First, a little pretty State House scenery (and my feet, LOL)

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I brought an opinion article with me from CommonWealth Magazine called The invisible hand of Gordon van Welie. If you don’t know who that is, you can join the club. I’m just becoming familiar with who he is, and what exactly ISO-NE stands for.

ISO is Independent System Operator for all of New England, which is “in charge of keeping the lights on throughout the region, coordinating the flow of electricity to power plants.” Mr. van Welie is the CEO of ISO. As you can see in the article, for whatever reason, Mr. van Welie wants New England to “overbuild” gas pipelines.

Not so fast.

As mentioned in Day 65, ISO-NE can absolutely avoid the gas infrastructure by starting to modernize the grid. As the article puts it:
Committing to gas under the auspices of maintaining reliability in the near term will result in sunk costs and stranded assets in the long term. Surely the dollars spent to build out such infrastructure and the time devoted to promoting more gas as a solution could be better spent adequately planning for more, cheaper efficiency, clean renewables and necessary infrastructure, and building a smarter grid.

The closure last month of Massachusetts’ lone remaining coal plant is an opportunity to think innovatively and plan for a future powered by clean resources rather than one tethered to the past.

It’s time for van Welie’s perspective to evolve with the times.

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Day #77 (late)

Pretty quiet on the “meeting scheduling” front. The whole State House is enmeshed in budget negotiations–the state budget is late. But, I’m making excuses for the Governor, LOL. His office can schedule something, especially since I wrote a very long and detailed letter requesting a site visit and a meeting for day 77:

Dear Governor Baker/Constituent Services-
Pursuant to the July 6, 2017 conversation on Boston Public Radio’s Ask The Governor, I’d like to formally re-extend invitations for a site visit and a meeting.

I can meet Governor Baker anytime, anywhere, at his convenience.

The site visit would be at Governor Baker’s convenience, as well.

Please let me know with whom I should coordinate so that these events happen soon.

Thank you so much,
Andrea Honore

😀

I also included a copy of the Town of Weymouth’s Notice of Claim (again) as this is the clearest reason yet to deny the Waterways “intention to” permit due to incompleteness of Enbridge’s application.

A new document was uploaded to the FERC dockets regarding the Town of Weymouth’s position regarding this whole mishigas. I hope to have a better copy to upload soon:

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Weymouth officials, you are the best! We are so lucky to have you in our corner, especially when I hear of other towns/cities across the US that fold in favor of the for-profit energy companies at the slightest nudge. Whatever happens in the future, we know we’ve ALL fought as long and as hard as possible

 

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Day #76

Sooooo, a funny thing happened before I made my way to Baker-sit.

I got live on the radio with Governor Baker. I finally got to talk to him! So did Rose W. of Cummington, MA:

— Rose’s question at 1:25:10 (thanks for the transcript, R!)
Thank you Gov. Baker for pledging to join the Climate Alliance.
Does that mean you’ll change your hands-off approach in opposing fossil fuel development like the Weymouth Compressor station, pipelines and LNG in the state?

Baker’s answer (with my notes)
60% of our current energy sources are natural gas, it would be pretty hard for us to walk away from that anytime soon. (No one is asking MA to walk away from current energy sources, just keep new, unneeded infrastructure out) And as we all know, the presence of natural gas has taken a ton of oil and coal out of our energy sector, which has been a good thing for a greenhouse gas point of view. (leaking methane and unburned gas released by gas infrastructure is worse than coal)

With respect to the compressor, I would just say the following. As I said before it’s a federal issue, but we do have a role to play here because we implement certain federal standards here (Misdirecting or does not have a good grasp on the process? MA’s role is to stringently review the STATE environmental applications. So far, that’s not happening). And we got a lot of really positive input from folks, Secretary Beaton and his team, during the public hearing process (Eh? From whom, for what? What public hearing process?). And we will hold those folks (Enbridge/Algonquin? I’m so confused, and I think he is too) to the highest standard possible under the federal law – you can count on that – with respect to both public safety, public health and any other issues associated with that.” (We want you to hold “those folks”, Enbridge/Algonquin, to the highest STATE standard. And you’re not so far)

Rose also wrote a rebuttal here.

— My question at 1:40:14
Jim: Andrea from Weymouth, you’re on Boston Public Radio with the Governor of the Commonwealth

Andrea: Hi everybody, thanks for having me on. Hi Governor Baker, it’s Andrea from your waiting room. Since I can’t talk to you in person, um,  at the State House, I would just like to speak to you over the radio and invite you to come down and have site visit at the proposed Weymouth compressor station location at 6 Bridge Street in Weymouth. We would love to have you!

Baker: I’ll talk to the scheduling people about it, Andrea. (I will hold you to that, Gov. B. Also, you pretty much just admitting you haven’t been to the site) I hope you’re being well taken care of in the office? (I would think casual listeners would wonder what he means by that comment. Jim, Margery, Baker and I know, though what he means. While Baker has been avoiding me for 76 days, his crack staff have been filling the gaps as best they can.)

Andrea: I am. Joyce and Victoria and the Constituent Services on down to, er, up to the Troopers have been incredibly nice to me, and welcoming and we have a great time, actually. (This is 100% truth) I would very much like to speak with you, though. (ALSO 100% truth)

Jim: Why isn’t the meeting happening, Governor? (Jim, Margery, Baker and I know what meeting Jim is referring to, heh)

Baker: I don’t know. I don’t know. Yeah, you know we get… I don’t know. (I know why I haven’t met with you.)

Jim: Andrea, thank you for the call. (No. Thank YOU!)

Margery: We get emails all the time about that same issue. (Margery, I don’t know you, but you’re a GEM. Also gems? The people who have advocated on my behalf to Boston Public Radio <3)

 

Today, the indefatigable Carolyn B. joined me on the couch. Thank you!

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Day #75 (late)

Pretty low key day. Really, the day was practically asleep.

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I do think that the Governor was there, behind the door, but he didn’t come out, LOL.

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I turned in a leftover sign from Action Week. Truly lazy.

 

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Day #74

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Today marks the last day of Action Week, and boy are my actions tired! Definitely need a little break over this long weekend. Today seven people joined me in the hallway (no signs in the waiting room). It was great meeting new people this week, and some of them had never been to the State House before. I was honored to give them the opportunity!

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I brought a note today as I just couldn’t resist.

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I printed my blog post about the Access Northeast project being withdrawn, a meme I made from a Zoolander still, and an article I saw today with a particular quote that made me L O L on the train this morning.

Here’s one last visual (made by FRRACS) to help everyone understand what happened yesterday, as it pertains to Weymouth:

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Have a great weekend everyone!

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