During the Delegation meeting with Senator Dean and Representative Perry in Trenton, Gilchrist County, FL, Merrillee Malwitz-Jipson, OSFR president, discussed the Sabal Trail Pipeline route through the Florida springs heartland and the Santa Fe River. Dangers from building this pipeline include karstic vulnerable soils that are prone to sink holes and potential damage to the Floridian aquifer. Representative Perry requested Ms. Jipson to provide him with science-based arguments defending our position on building in sinkhole environments, in which she obliged.
She also explained that as a result of being opposed to the construction of this 36″ gas transmission pipeline, OSFR has begun to develop a stand for opposition to fracking in Florida. Additionally, she asked them to support a ban on fracking Florida, and to support 2 separate anti-fracking bills in the Senate and the House: SB166 and HB169. Also she requested their support in reforming the Public Service Commission through SB 170, and to support a 2016 ballot initiative to back solar incentives in Florida, an initiative begun by the Republican Party.
Sen. Dean related a story to Ms. Jipson about a recent trip to the Everglades and was quite surprised by all the well drilling rigs he witnessed. OSFR then requested that Dean sponsor Rep. Jenne’s HB 169, anti-well stimulation.