LP Gas opponents plan Geneva Rally for Jan. 31

Staff Writer
The Chronicle Express

A regional rally expected to draw more than 300 residents from around the Finger Lakes will be held Saturday, Jan. 31 beginning at 2 p.m. at Lakefront Park in Geneva.

The rally is to show support for leaders around Seneca Lake and the region who have passed resolutions opposing a proposal by an out-of-state corporation to construct a liquid propane gas storage facility on the east shore of the lake, two miles north of Watkins Glen.

The Crestwood Corporation of Houston, Texas is seeking state approval to store LPG in unlined salt caverns. The corporation’s application is pending with the State Dept. of Environmental Conservation and will be the subject of an issues conference before an administrative judge Feb. 12.

Opponents believe storing LPG in the caverns will result in a catastrophe.

“Turning Seneca Lake’s old salt caverns into vats for gasses poses unacceptable risks to our drinking water, our safety and our health,” biologist and environmental activist Sandra Steingraber said. “There are outstanding concerns for public health and safety. Our voices will be heard.”

“We want to send a clear message to the governor and the state that the people of the region oppose this,” rally organizer Laura Salamendra of Geneva said.

The rally will start at the Lakefront Park and include a march through downtown Geneva with stops at U.S. Congressman Tom Reed’s office (433 Exchange St.) and Geneva City Hall (47 Castle St.).

Featured speakers will include Salamendra, Seneca County Supervisor Steve Churchill, Geneva City Councilor Ken Camera, Doug Couchon, a principal organizer of We Are Seneca Lake and Sandra Steingraber.