Tuesday, August 21, 2012

$587,620.00 Lump Sum **Updated with Links**

You may recall that there were precisely three attempts made by our Grand Prairie, TX City Council to place unodorized gas gathering pipelines in our Westchester and other South Grand Prairie, TX neighborhoods last fall and in the final Public Hearing on January 3rd, 2012 (we'll link to those stories in a little while).
**Updated with Links**Click Here, Click Here, Click Here and Yes, Click Here.

Certain members of our southern Grand Prairie community presented statements in opposition to these lateral gathering pipelines that would run through the heart of our community. It was a pipeline system many considered to be "inevitable."

It all happened between Thanksgiving and the New Year and made for a festive 2nd straight year of spending our holidays with the gas drilling issue front and center. We thank DFW Midstream and our own Grand Prairie, TX City Manager and City Council for making it all possible.  Those attempts failed.

Now, we hear from our Trailwood neighbors (to the west of Westchester) that gas gathering pipeline markers have actually been staked out for the placement of a new route for these gathering pipelines since long before the summer.  DFW Midstream (in $$cooperation$$ with our City and other cities in the Barnett Shale) tries very hard to be a utility  since utility companies do what they do "for the public good." Sadly, the shale gas business wants us to see them as a very well-regulated "public utility," unfortunately, they're not.

Question #1: If you think that placing unodorized gas gathering pipelines within 50 yards of children attending Dickinson Elementary School is a rational and sane idea, please raise your hand? Anyone?
Dickinson Elementary School's Web site

Question #2:  How much is it worth to bring this kind of DANGER within a very short distance of the playgrounds for very young children in our community...or ANY community?? ANSWER:  $587,620 (lump sum) is the price in Grand Prairie, Texas (look at the above "Financial Consideration," Revenue: $587,620 ~ as seen on the Agenda Details for tonight's City Council Meeting.)

Some may remember this...and some may wish they didn't:
Yes. They were "unodorized" gas distribution pipelines. 


  1. During tonight's City Council Meeting, and during the brief back and forth from City Council members, not one mention was made of the fact that these particular gathering lines are unodorized (like the ones in New London such a long time ago) and are going in so close to an elementary school. We figure they just didn't want to think about that out loud or even ask DFW Midstream anything about the regulation of them...or that those low pressure pipelines do leak. All of those details are just so boring.

    We have learned the hard way that the marriage between our City and the Shale Gas Industry is tied up in a very tight financial knot. The only thing that will change any of that is new leadership from the top down. That's the only way anything will change. And as long as the gas operators can keep these city officials "happy," and the people of Grand Prairie don't speak up, it will be quite a challenge to break those deep ties that bind.

    It was just another sad night in gasland...good night.

  2. As if to dismiss any "danger," (and we've certainly heard this argument before) Councilman Hepworth with all the infrastructure wisdom he must have in him spoke up, as if on cue, to make sure everyone understands that these are "low pressure" gas gathering pipelines. Yes, they are. And Jason Panek, the DFW Midstream spokesperson, made sure to affirm Councilman Hepworth's statement. Yes, sir, they are. And that's all you need to know, folks. Go home, now!

    We just wish someone on the City Council would have made a stronger declaration of how often low pressure pipelines do have issues. So, in lieu of that, we'll be writing about it, soon. Just to fill in the details. We think the details are very important.

  3. And just to make all of this clearer...the vote last week was for a pipeline system that left off the Westchester extension.

    We suppose we made OUR point...but it's terribly unfortunate that others just a neighborhood over weren't given the same consideration.

    City leaders might say that these neighbors mostly signed on to this by signing mineral leases back in 2007.

    But We must ask this question: If they knew then what we know, would they still agree to sign? Answer: We seriously DOUBT they would ALL sign. Those we've managed to talk to express how they had NO IDEA when they signed these leases what this would bring to their neighborhoods.

    So, there you have it. As this Westchester Neighbor's grandfather said (he made a fortune in the early wildcatter days of the East Texas oil fields) AND clearly stated when he was around 94 years old, "They're all crooks."

    There are many stories of fortunes made and lost in the Texas oil and gas industry. Of course, not all are "crooks." Shale gas is one more chapter. Sadly, the damage is turning out to be much greater in this, what seems to be turning out to be, the Final Chapter.


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