The video above was shot and edited by the People’s Department of Environmental Justice, and released to media last night.
RANDOLPH — Yesterday morning, members of a group called the People’s Department of Environmental Justice (PDEJ) served a mock notice of eminent domain at the home of Vermont Public Service Department Commissioner Chris Recchia.
Just before 7:00 a.m. PDEJ members, dressed in hard hats and high visibility vests approached Recchia with the fake notice of eminent domain.
The notice stated, “the land belonging to Commissioner Recchia is now under the legal jurisdiction of those most severely impacted by the permitting of the VGS Fracked Gas pipeline project. If Recchia will not take any accountability for his role in rubber-stamping extreme energy projects that accelerate the climate crisis, exploit first nations communities and harass the public here in Vermont, the People’s Department of Environmental Justice will continue ongoing education development projects on this property.”
While Recchia contemplated the notice, a dozen PDEJ members surveyed the yard, flagged off major sections, erected a 20-foot tall mock Hydro-Fracking drill rig and performed a groundbreaking ceremony.
As the ribbon was cut, PDEJ member Douglas Smith made a speech about the need for a re-allocation of funds.
“The investment that should be going into renewables is going into a 50-year commitment to fossil fuel infrastructure for fracked gas, and that’s just no good.”
The groups stated efforts aimed to draw Recchia’s attention to the personal damages he has caused residents along the controversial VT Gas System’s Fracked Gas Pipeline project that his Department permitted.
“Chris Recchia has stubbornly stuck to his original notion that fracked gas is good for Vermont, but it’s not true, and it has never been true,” said Douglas Smith. “The Department of Public Service is aware of new science that spells out clearly that fracked gas, so-called natural gas, is having a massive warming impact on our global climate, as well as other harmful effects on drinking water, the natural environment and those living in extraction areas.”
The People’s Department of Environmental Justice says it is a citizen group committed to working for a healthy environment and livable planet where everyone has access to the decision-making processes that affect them.
Members say they are looking forward to the upcoming Rising Tide action camp being held in opposition to the fracked gas pipeline.
“This morning for one half hour, the Commissioner of the state’s Department of Public Service (DPS) suffered a good-humored and harmless parody of what dozens of Vermont homeowners have suffered for real under threat of eminent domain taking of their land, so that Vermont Gas Systems, aided and abetted by DPS and its Commissioner, can build its fracked gas pipeline from Addison to Chittenden counties,” said PDEJ member Geoffrey Gardner.