Enbridge Is Seeking To Increase It’s Influence Over Vermont Utilities
Don’t Let It Happen!
Canadian corporation, Enbridge, Inc. is one of North America’s biggest fossil fuel infrastructure companies, notorious for building tarsands oil pipelines. In recent years, Enbridge has also been increasing its construction of fracked gas pipelines in Canada and the US. Enbridge pipelines have a terrible record of oil spills, gas explosions, fires and other health and safety faults.
Greenpeace has estimated that from 2002-2018 Enbridge’s oil pipelines averaged a non-trivial accident every 20 days. In 2010, an Enbridge pipeline spilled nearly a million gallons of oil into the Kalamazoo river in Michigan. Clean-up cost more than $1.5 billion and is still not complete. Enbridge’s record distributing fracked gas is also marked by disaster. Last fall, an Enbridge gas pipeline northeast of prince George, B.C. exploded, resulting in personal injuries, property destruction and emergency evacuations. The Lheidli T’enneh First Nation has now gone to court in B.C. to keep Enbridge from operating this pipeline on their land any longer. In February of this year, another Enbridge gas pipeline exploded in Noble County Ohio causing an 80 foot high fireball that injured people, damaged buildings and led to emergency evacuation of the area. And now, through a holding company named Noverco,
Enbridge Wants To Increase Its Stake
In Green Mountain Power and Vermont Gas Systems
Here’s how it works: Vermont utilities, GMP and VGS both are owned 100% by a Montreal fossil fuel company called Énergir. At present, Énergir is owned 30% by public shareholders and 70% by Noverco which in turn is owned 28% by Enbridge and the rest by Trencap, a consortium of Canadian pension and investment funds. Noverco is seeking permission to buy up all the public shares in Énergir. This would increase Enbridge’s ownership stake in Énergir to nearly 40%. It will also increase Enbridge’s power on the Énergir board of directors from 25% to 33%. This will be a significant increase of Enbridge’s power over GMP and VGS. And this could mean increased electricity rates and fracked gas infrastructure expansion here in Vermont –contrary to the state’s renewable energy goals.
To carry through the buyout, Noverco needs the approval of Énergir’s public shareholders, The Federal Energy Regulatory Commission, the Quebec Superior Court and Vermont’s Public Utilities Commission (PUC). Right now all these approvals –except for the PUC’s– have been granted. Last week the PUC ordered that a group of 19 Vermont citizens will be allowed to intervene in opposition to the buyout during the PUC’s case on this matter.
If You’re Opposed To Fossil Fuel Infrastructure Expansion In Vermont
This Is The Time To Act!
Please take a moment to write a few sentences to:
PUC Clerk Judith Whitney at: PUC.Clerk@vermont.gov
demanding that the PUC reject the Noverco petition to buy out the public shareholders in Énergir, increasing Enbridge’s ownership stake in VGS and GMP to nearly 40% . Be sure to reference PUC Case # 19-1081-PET and offer your strongest two or three reasons for opposing this effort to increase Enbridge’s influence over Vermont’s energy systems.
For more information see: https://vtdigger.org/2019/06/25/regulator-allows-activists-to-weigh-in-on-canadian-power-deal/
Or write to us at: UpperValleyAffinityGroup@gmail.com