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Thursday, April 27, 2017

Rover Pipeline Feeling Heat After 2 Spills; Will Also Pay $2.3 Million for Demolishing Historic Home

As we previously posted about here on The Daily Digger, the Rover pipeline has had a couple of spills during the construction process.  These occurrences are drawing attention to the project - no doubt the kind of attention that Energy Transfer Partners would rather avoid.

Here’s how the company says it happened: 
“Due to the subsurface conditions and other environmental conditions of the locations, the drilling mud was able to migrate through naturally occurring fractures in the soils and reach the surface.” 
So Earth did it, in cahoots with the environment. 
No one should be surprised that construction of the pipeline, which started only recently, has led to screw-ups. Rover has not hidden the fact that it is in a hurry. 
Corporate attorneys argued this year in U.S. District Court that Rover had to make haste. The company needed permission to cut trees along the pipeline’s path ASAP because endangered bats would soon awaken from their winter slumber and begin roosting in trees. Rover had to finish its tree-cutting before April 1, or the project would be forced to endure a costly delay until the bats left the trees and returned to hibernation in the fall. 
Hemorrhaging a few million gallons of muck into some wetlands is one thing. Hemorrhaging money is quite another.
From WTUZ:
Officials are showing concern following two Rover Pipeline spills last week, one in a wetland near the Tuscarawas River in Navarre. 
Tuscarawas County Commissioner Joe Scarretti, noted anything that happens upstream of the river, should be of concern to the county. 
“Anything that happens along that proximity we should be concerned about. Everything that I’ve seen is that they were on it, they mitigated the spills.” 
Scarretti went on to say that unfortunately with major projects like this one, mistakes are likely to be made. 
“If we’re doing our job then we should know that too and be familiar with it. So, yea that was concerning. But it looks like they’re on top of it and hopefully they’ll learn from those mistakes.”
 We've also previously reported on the decision by Rover to demolish a home in Carroll County that was eligible for the registry of historical places.  After a back-and-forth with officials, Rover now has to pay for that decision.  From BG Independent News:
Rover tore down the Stoneman House before notifying the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission, even though the commission had identified the building as a concern. 
On Feb. 23, 2015, Rover reportedly filed its application for the project, which included a commitment to “a solution that results in no adverse effects” to the historic structure.
But the house was torn down in May 2016. 
After learning that the house had been torn down, preservation office staff said Rover should provide financial assistance to the state preservation office for local preservation needs. 
The company agreed to pay $2.3 million to a fund administered by the Ohio History Connection Foundation and the State Historic Preservation Office. A total of $1 million is for preservation work in the 18 counties crossed by the pipeline. The rest of the money will be used for projects across the state.
One would imagine that the Rover pipeline would prefer to simply stay out of the news as construction continues.

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