I found this property one day while bicycling along the Blue Ridge
Parkway. A lot of people from all over
the state use the Blue Ridge Parkway and the Appalachian Trail as a place to
get back to nature. It really is
Virginia’s back yard here. I decided that
moving here to look out at the unspoiled mountains every morning and to truly
have the National Parks and Forest land as my backyard was the ideal spot to build
my own house. It is also a place with
some rich history and characters that make it unlike any place around. Nelson
County is one of the few places left where the American dream is still
possible. This dream takes many forms here, from the PHD turned farmer, to a
place to build your own home to a perfect spot to build a business. Despite the recession, Nelson County
reinvents itself as the new Napa valley and brewery destination. We live here
with the land, as farms and wineries and as scenic beauty that provides most of
our strong economy here. It is truly a
one of a kind place and that is why we call it home and want to protect it.
We are opening an Inn this year, after spending three years of endless labor building all aspects of it. I knew the final touches would take some time and be stressful, and then at this same time, we learned that we were in the tornado path of destruction called the ACP. So our first worry is what impact this might have on our fledgling business to have 2 years of drilling and tunneling in our side yard. It is also a very personal fight for us. We have been lied to by Dominion and our government officials. We have been denied the rights granted to us in our constitution, been denied to speak at the FERC meetings. But at some point we have replaced the fear with actions. We have gathered in our own groups and shared these fears and found some strength in our County. We have filed stacks of papers with many government agencies, called hundreds more. We have found out the truth and it seems to scare Dominion. By now we all know this is wrong, that Dominion lies about key facts, intimidates 80 year old widow to get surveys and does their best to break our spirits. And so while finding out you may have a giant pipeline in your yard that threatens to kill your dreams really really sucks, we will come out of this adversity stronger.
What would you like to ultimately be decided about the pipeline & how will the final decision affect your voting decisions, locally & otherwise? Our short term hope is that the ACP will be sent along a colocation route along existing easements that Dominion already owns, thus disturbing few people and less of the National Park area. Dominion will claim it is not feasible, only that it will require approval from Congress, and so they lie about the maps to the National Park System to bypass laws passed 40 years ago meant to protect this area from this very event. Our long term hope is that at some point the country will look forward more than an election cycle and develop a long term plan for energy. This plan would include saving some our gas reserves for future generations rather than selling it all off to India and Asian markets. You can check out Dominions annual report to see how proud they are of their exporting of natural gas. I have my doubts about this energy policy ever getting implemented. For all the talk of hope and change, the current administration is doing its utmost to make Cheney look like the Lorax. In our own state, the gas companies have gotten favors from both parties, and it would appear that the rural counties have little value to those in Richmond or Washington other than a place to exploit.