This is a recent letter to the editor penned as a response to train derailments around the county in the winter of 2023.
What could possibly go wrong? I was astonished after reading the recent news that there is no contingency plan in Wyalusing or anywhere in northern PA for an emergency response to a train derailment containing hazardous materials. We have seen a spate of rail accidents around the country in recent weeks that should alarm everyone about the risks of shipping LNG out of the proposed plant in Browntown, PA.
I was glad the Wyalusing Borough Council was looking into this- but the findings as reported in the Rocket- Courier were alarming. Those living in East Palestine, Ohio should consider themselves fortunate that the derailment there was only toxic chemicals and not LNG.
The fact that the Wyalusing Township supervisors allowed the New Fortress LNG project to go forward should now be reviewed with even more suspicion. That desecration of our town's history, along with the bulldozing of 265 acres along the beautiful Susquehanna River is now a potential threat to the lives of tens of thousands living in Pennsylvania and New Jersey. The sheer amount of proposed shipments of LNG from Wyalusing- ranging from one train per day or 1400 trucks a day makes the likelihood of a disaster very probable.. And not just a normal disaster but one of catastrophic scope. It has been estimated by some that one train of LNG would be the equivalent explosive potential of four Hiroshima atomic bombs. And to think that after an LNG shipment accident, we'd have to wait for an emergency response team from Harrisburg to arrive four hours later to attempt containment is beyond belief. And to be realistic, what kind of containment could be expected for this level of destruction?
At the very least, each town in Pennsylvania should have adequate training in HAZMAT procedures- paid for by the likes of New Fortress Energy. But even that would be paltry in the face of this kind of LNG debacle. Even more alarming is the rubber stamping of the LNG plant and the disdain expressed by Senator Gene Yaw in his letter to the editor, of about a year ago. Yaw berates those who have put a halt to the New Fortress plant. This legal action by the SIerra Club and others that stopped the LNG plant could reasonably be regarded as godsend in light of these recent tragedies. Yaw laments the loss of a potential $800 million project. But whether an abomination is 800 million or 800 billion dollars it is still an abomination. We should remind Yaw and others that they were elected to represent the people and not merely be a lackey for the gas and oil companies.
To view a video of Brian Keeler painting along the Susquehanna at the proposed site fo the LNG- where he reflects upon the beauty an the possible destruction of this site- view this youtube link.