January 23, 2017 - 5:21 PM EST
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Atlantic Sunrise Intervenor Condemns FERC Subversion of Environmental Protection Process for The Nesbitt Parcel in Gas Pipeline Case

Geraldine Nesbitt Protests FERC Actions Preventing Lawful Input in Case

A spokesperson for an intervenor in the Atlantic Sunrise Expansion Project said the staff of the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) circumvented the requirements of the National Environmental Protection Act (NEPA) in the natural gas pipeline gas expansion by willfully disregarding facts about significant and irreplaceable cultural and environmental resources on The Nesbitt Parcel affected by the project.

Through her spokesperson, Geraldine Nesbitt condemned the final Environmental Impact Study (EIS) released by the FERC staff on December 30, 2016, which favors a more destructive pipeline route proposed by the Williams Companies (NYSE: WMB) and Williams Partners (NYSE: WPZ) through a portion of her property, The Nesbitt Parcel. A less destructive and more convenient alternate route has been identified.

Attorney Carolyn Elefant, the Nesbitt spokesperson, said the FERC project manager, along with its consultants, deliberately ignored the extensive data submitted by Ms. Nesbitt’s team of experts and intentionally disregarded requests from federally recognized Native American tribes for on-site government-to-government consultation concerning the sacred cultural resources that would be damaged by the pipeline expansion.

“Had they visited the site as they were urged to do by both Ms. Nesbitt and at least one Federally Recognized Tribe, FERC staff members could have seen with their own eyes the validity of the facts submitted on Ms. Nesbitt’s behalf,” Elefant said. “Instead of independently verifying the overwhelming impacts that would result from Williams’ route selection, the FERC staff appears to have blindly accepted the flawed data submitted by Williams and blatantly ignored any contradicting submissions from Ms. Nesbitt without any acknowledgement or response. This includes the potential destruction of 66 culturally significant stone features that are directly within the pipeline’s proposed path.”

Some of these archeological features are almost 100 feet long in the shape of animals. Experts Ms. Nesbitt has retained to evaluate the cultural resources on her property have concluded they meet the criteria to be considered a UNESCO World Heritage Site, deserving of international protection, along with listing on the National Register of Historic Places.

Ms. Nesbitt’s team of archaeologists conducted an exhaustive survey of the proposed route across her property and submitted a detailed report with photographs and GPS locations to highlight both the significance of the resources and the damage they would sustain if the pipeline were constructed along the route proposed by Williams and its consultants.

At least one Federally Recognized Tribe submitted comments about the significance of the numerous sacred stone features on Ms. Nesbitt’s property that FERC’s staff simply chose to ignore along with requests for formal government-to-government consultation. FERC’s staff also ignored the fact that there is at least one known gravesite within the proposed pipeline corridor and likely many more unmarked burials.

“It is clear that FERC’s staff made up their mind on the route they would select before the public commenting period began and that their actions were simply perfunctory to give the appearance of complying with NEPA and their own regulations,” Elefant said. “Their actions mean Williams can sell gas overseas at the cost of destroying both a truly unique complex of cultural stone landscape features and substantial environmental resources.”

The actions of the FERC staff threaten to delay this important project unnecessarily with additional legal and administrative procedures. Such a delay only benefits Williams’ consultants at the expense of Williams, its stockholders, environment and cultural treasures and, in fact, the energy needs of the nation.

About Geraldine Nesbitt

Geraldine Nesbitt is the owner of The Nesbitt Parcel in Dallas Township, PA. Ms. Nesbitt seeks to protect and preserve extraordinarily unique cultural resources on her property that are highly significant to several Federally Recognized Indian Tribes, which experts believe also qualify as an UNESCO World Heritage Site. Ms. Nesbitt is also seeking to protect significant environmental habitats on her property that experts state are comparable to or exceed, with regard to biodiversity, any state park in Pennsylvania.

About The Nesbitt Parcel

The Nesbitt Property has been owned and conserved by the Nesbitt family for more than 120 years. Abram Nesbitt, a prominent businessman and philanthropist who funded the area's first hospital in 1912, bought the first section of the current ownership in the 1890s. Eventually, 40 other parcels were purchased and added together to form the current Nesbitt Parcel. The Williams Companies (NYSE: WMB) and Williams Partners (NYSE: WPZ) are enlarging and expanding the capacity of an interstate pipelines through what is called the Atlantic Sunrise project. Williams Partners seeks eminent domain powers to impact land owned by Ms. Nesbitt.

Note: The Nesbitt Parcel is private property and trespassers are subject to prosecution.
©Copyright 2017 by Geraldine Nesbitt. All rights reserved.

The Nesbitt Parcel
Media and Investor Contact:
Jerry Ray, +1 904-307-0186
[email protected]

Source: Business Wire (January 23, 2017 - 5:21 PM EST)

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