I suppose it shouldn't come as any real surprise, since the "fix" has been in on the sale of three national parks since last fall, so let's call it outrageous, disgusting and contemptible.  The Obama Administration, Secretary of the Interior Ken Salazar, and the upper echelon of the National Park Service sold something that belongs to YOU to two huge energy corporations today.  And guess what?  YOU will pay for the energy corporations' bribe!

After recommending the "no action" alternative for the Susquehanna-Roseland Transmission Line last fall, the NPS reversed themselves today and selected the power companies' preferred Alternative 2, the most damaging route across the Delaware Water Gap National Recreation Area, the middle Delaware National Scenic River, and the Appalachian Trail.

“In identifying the preferred alternative, we closely examined the existing easements owned by the utilities, the impacts of the proposed transmission line, alternatives to the proposal, and mitigation measures to avoid and minimize adverse impacts to park resources,” said Dennis Reidenback, the Park Service's Northeast regional director.

Oh, and those "mitigation measures?"  That is the $40M land-bribe that the power companies are offering to the NPS in exchange for license to ruin three parks that belong to the citizens of the United States.  And, under federal electric ratemaking schemes, the power companies won't be paying that $40M.  They are permitted to recover the full amount from ratepayers in 13 states and the District of Columbia over the next 50 years.  Under the same ratemaking scheme, the power companies will also make a profit on this $40M through the 12.9% interest they will earn on the unpaid balance of the $40M bribe each and every one of the next 50 years.  The Obama Administration and the National Park Service has sold YOUR parks to corporations and is making you pay for the bribe they received in return for agreeing to the sale of YOUR assets!  

Although the power companies and the Obama Administration are pretending that the Susquehanna-Roseland line will "save you money" by alleviating made-up "congestion," it's all a bunch of phony invention.  Susquehanna-Roseland is going to do nothing but make my electric rates go up.  Hmm... wouldn't this make a delicious formal complaint?  

Check out the comments of New Jersey Sierra Club Director Jeff Tittel, who isn't afraid to call a spade a spade.

"Today the Obama administration sold out our National Parks.  Lands that are supposed to be protected for future generations, they turned over to power companies. This is a shameful day in the long history of our parks and may set precedent for more gas and power lines through our parks.  This decision is an insult to the more than 5 million people that visit the Water Gap every year," said Jeff Tittel, Director, NJ Sierra Club.

"We will continue fighting this project, even in the Courts if necessary.  We will stand up for the integrity of our National Parks, even if the Department of Interior will not."

"This is all about the power of money, whether it is coal companies and utilities pushing a power line that will cut through a national park, or people standing in line to get mitigation money so that they can profit on the destruction of a National Park's resources."

Perhaps worst of all, the environmental destruction could cause a severe infestation of bolt weevils in the Parks!!


scott olson
03/30/2012 4:24am

It ain't over yet. Just a flesh wound. The battle continues. Thanks for keeping this in the minds of your readers.

03/30/2012 5:32am

That's the spirit! Count us in on future efforts! The boldness of the NPS not even bothering to hide their "in your face" collusion with corporate interests to the detriment of the public assets they are tasked with protecting is outrageous. NPS = FAIL!


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