WV Chapter Interstate Powerline Campaign
Background Information on WV Chapter Campaign
On March 30, 2007, the Trans-Allegheny Interstate Line Company (AKA TrAILCo, AKA Allegheny Energy) filed an application with the WV Public Service Commission (PSC) for approval to construct a 500 kV transmission line through 114 miles of West Virginia, crossing Monongalia, Preston, Tucker, Grant, Hardy and Hampshire Counties. The new line originates in Pennsylvania, and would terminate in Virginia. The line is intended to provide additional transmission capacity to allow Allegheny Energy to transmit power from its plants in WV, PA and OH, to East Coast customers.
Opposition has been expressed by the Hampshire, Hardy, Preston and Monongalia County Commissions, several watershed organizations, and various individuals and homeowners. Intense opposition is also developing in Pennsylvania and Virginia.
Indirect adverse effects of the line will stem from increased sales of power, including:
Not blind opposition to progress, but opposition to blind progress.
West Virginia Public Service Commission: www.psc.state.wv.us Search for case number 07-0508-E-CN
Allegheny Power subsidiary. Includes maps of route, as well as links to the WV, PA and VA applications.
Laurel Run Watershed Association, http://www.laurelrunwatershed.org/ Monongalia County info.
Halleck and Southern Monongalia County Community Association: http://www.notowersinwv.org/
Capon Valley Coalition http://caponvalleycoalition.com/ News items from Hardy & Hampshire County
Piedmont Environmental Council www.pecva.org (Virginia)
Energy Conservation Council of Pennsylvania www.stopthetowers.org (Pennsylvania)
Write Letter of Protest at the top.
Top Seven Reasons to Deny the Certificate of Need for the TrAILCo Allegheny Power Line
Alleghenys application states that no significant environmental impacts are expected. This statement is ludicrous! No competent environmental assessor would make such a claim. The PSC should reject the application and require that an accurate and truthful review of the environmental impacts be submitted.
The transmission line is intended to deliver power to East Coast urban centers. No West Virginia citizens will benefit.
Alleghenys application claims that West Virginia retail electric customers will not be responsible, directly or indirectly, for the costs associated with the financing, construction, ownership, or operation of the West Virginia Segments. But this is based on the unproven assumption that the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) approves the cost allocations to areas outside West Virginia. This is contradicted by Alleghenys claim elsewhere that West Virginia customers would benefit from the increased reliability of the network, and from testimony submitted by Allegheny on the electrical need for the West Virginia segments. Allegheny is trying to have it both ways, in the hopes that no one will notice until it is too late.
Allegheny wants us to believe that new transmission capacity is the best way to relieve projected transmission congestion. However, no analysis of energy conservation efforts has been included. Numerous independent experts have concluded that energy conservation could reduce demand more quickly, more cheaply, and more safely than construction of new capacity.
Virtually all of Alleghenys electricity generation is from coal-fired power plants. The primary purpose of this line is to enhance transmission of this electricity to East Coast markets. This electricity would displace generation of cleaner, but more expensive plants in those areas. When coupled with the inefficiencies of electricity transmission, this would significantly increase the emissions of greenhouse gases such as carbon dioxide. The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) indicates that the world must reduce the rate of emissions, possibly as soon as 2015, and certainly within the next 20 years, but the transmission line would have an effective life of 30-50 years. While slowing global warming is not going to be cheap or easy, making bad investments in fossil-fuel capacity now is a major step in the wrong direction, and is the most expensive approach to reducing the emissions of greenhouse gases.
Many landowners along the route, those directly crossed by the line and those nearby, would suffer a loss of property value. In many cases, the compensation offered would not fully offset the perceived loss of value to the local property owners.
Alleghenys power plants are among the largest emitters of sulfur dioxides, nitrogen oxides, particulates, and mercury in West Virginia. Our air already exceeds EPA health standards in many areas. Increased generation resulting from this line would make the air worse.
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"West Virginia is Ours, No More Allegheny Towers!"
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