About Me

My photo
Nazareth, Pa., United States

Wednesday, September 02, 2015

NorCo's Open Space Advisory Board Out of Touch

Yesterday, Northampton County's Open Space Advisory Board met in a meeting with Council's Open Space Committee. They were asked to weigh in on the PennEast Pipeline, and I was shocked at what at leased one member, Bill Mineo, considers important.

Nobody seriously disputes that it's coming. But what should have Northampton County residents concerned is the Bethlehem watershed, which supplies 115,000 people in Northampton County. The latest PennEast route takes it across that watershed at two locations. Bethlehem, the Bethlehem Authority, Lower Saucon Township and Hanover Townships have all agreed to send letters to the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) about this route. My guess is that Bethlehem Township will add its voice as well.

But Mineo expressed no concern about its impact on our drinking water. He instead railed about its passage along steep slopes that are conserved in Williams Township. He complained about PennEast re-routing from a path along St. Luke's Hospital without giving "the same type of attention" to land in the middle of nowhere.

I personally believe the County should add its voice to the municipalities expressing concern about the Bethlehem watershed. I see this as the single most pressing issue about the pipeline. Mineo completely disregarded that while making a pitch for rocks and boulders.

The Open Space Advisory Board is out of touch. Though I've just criticized Mineo for his lack of  perspective, I respect his zeal and knowledge. But to be effective, the Open Space Advisory Board needs members who are a bit more open-minded.

There are currently two vacancies.

Care to apply?

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

When it comes to open space, why are we buying up the development rights along our major highways. Why aren't we allowing that land to be developed and preserving the farmland in our communities? Those trucks that are going to warehouses miles from the major roads are causing additional pollution, additional wear and tear and deterioration of our roadways, heavy truck traffic and congestion in our Boro's and townships and this all could be avoided by putting these warehouses next to #33, #78, and #22.