"Continuing ahead with eminent domain while permits are in question is a gross violation of public process and demonstrates the extreme lengths that Vermont Gas is willing to go to salvage this ill-conceived, expensive, and unnecessary project," said Monkton landowner Jane Palmer, who participated in the shut down.
The meeting was prematurely adjourned within ten minutes after the hearing officer was unable to proceed over the chorus of song and music filling the room. Vermont Gas representatives and state officials were further prevented from performing a site visit at the home of an impacted landowner whose property is slated for condemnation and construction of the pipeline. Nearly 30 Vermont residents held banners at the entrance to Cedar Road to block VT Gas assessors from entering the property of the affected landowners. Although accompanied by police, assessors left after being unable to enter the property, and no arrests were made.
"Vermonters know that building a fracked gas pipeline is not a solution to our climate crisis – and they're enraged that eminent domain is being used to force the largest fossil fuel infrastructure project in over 50 years," said Aly Johnson-Kurts, 21, who grew up in Worcester and recently represented U.S. youth at the United Nations climate negotiations.
Demonstrators vowed to redouble their resistance to eminent domain proceedings and the construction of the pipeline into the new year.