On Wednesday evening, April 12, in Spokane, Washington, faith, spiritual, health, and environmental advocates will lead a community gathering, teach-in, and procession in opposition to the proposed Gas Transmission Northwest (GTN) Xpress fracked gas pipeline expansion . The 62-year-old GTN pipeline runs under the Spokane River and through Liberty Lake, Spokane Valley, and other parts of Spokane County [2, 3]. Canadian company TC Energy, owner of the leaking Keystone and rejected Keystone XL tar sands pipelines, and its subsidiary GTN threaten to pump up to 150 million cubic feet of additional methane gas per day through the GTN pipeline that crosses north Idaho, eastern Washington, and central Oregon.
While communities throughout the Northwest shift away from coal, oil, and “natural” gas, fossil fuel companies like TC Energy have adopted a new tactic: bolstering the capacity of aging pipelines. A broad, regional, Stop GTN Xpress coalition, the Columbia River Inter-Tribal Fish Commission, U.S. Senators Jeff Merkley and Ron Wyden of Oregon, Washington Governor Jay Inslee, three West Coast state attorneys general, and other concerned Northwesterners are resisting this gas pipeline and compressor station expansion.
The Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) could vote for or against granting project approval as early as April 20. The GTN Xpress pipeline expansion further risks exposing local, Spokane area, and north Idaho communities to both the dangers and damages of ruptured pipeline explosions, fires, and pollution and the increased carbon and greenhouse gas emissions that are causing more severe storms, droughts, wildfires, and floods [4-6].
The gathering and teach-in at 6:30 pm Pacific time on April 12, at Salem Lutheran Church, 1428 West Broadway Avenue in Spokane, will feature comments from members of Earth Ministry/Washington Interfaith Power and Light (WAIPL), Washington Physicians for Social Responsibility (WPSR), and Wild Idaho Rising Tide (WIRT), among other organizations [7-9]. They will offer opportunities to learn about GTN Xpress and its potential impacts on public and environmental health and safety. After an interactive presentation with speakers, event organizers invite participants to join a procession with signs and banners, walking together several blocks to the banks of the Spokane River, where faith leaders will share a brief group prayer and photograph the demonstration.
To access further information and attend, please contact coordinating groups and visit their websites and RSVP through the event description link . Continue reading