On Wednesday, April 24, 2013, "a utility crew, in St. Albans Town struck a gas line and caused a leak that forced about 30 people from their homes. No one was hurt. Northerly winds helped carry the gas away from the homes. The evacuation lasted about 2.5 hours." (WCAX News)
On April 26, 2013 a cement truck cut a corner too close at VT Route 116 and Shelburne Falls Rd. A gas valve box was struck. Natural gas was vented until crews closed valves on either side of the leak. Vermont Gas crews and the Hinesburg volunteer fire department were on the scene to help. (Burlington Free Press)
On September 24, 2013, a construction crew struck a gas line on Main Street in St. Albans. People in several buildings were forced to leave, including six businesses and a dozen apartments. Vermont Gas sealed the leak. No one was hurt. (Burlington Free Press)
Five people in Allentown, Pa., were not that lucky. They died in a blast caused by a gas leak on Feb. 10, 2011. A city block was leveled. Forty-seven homes were destroyed. (The Huffington Post)
On Nov. 23, 2012, 18 people were injured, two buildings were destroyed and a total of 42 buildings were damaged in Springfield, Mass. The cause was an explosion due to a leak of natural gas. (Reuters)
"Methane emissions are rising. A growing amount seems to be leaking, for instance, from gas wells and pipelines." (National Geographic, December 2012, Marianne Lavelle)
Researchers from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration and the University of Colorado Boulder report in a study done in February 2012. Four percent of the methane produced at a field near Denver was escaping into the atmosphere. At the Unita Basin of Utah, 9 percent of the total production of methane escaped into the atmosphere. (Nature International Weekly Journal of Science, Jan. 2, 2013)
Does this "bargain" from Vermont Gas affect our reasoning powers? What do the words "clean," "safe," and "good for the economy" mean?
If possible, wake up your heart and mind, open your pocket and donate to WARMTH, c/o CVOEO, PO Box 1603 Burlington, VT 05402. The Merchant's Bank is partnering with WARMTH for the month of December and will match all donations.
Patricia Heather-Lea, Bristol