Charlestown Township
Acting Environmental Advisory Council (EAC)
Great Valley High School Library
Minutes of Wednesday, September 12, 2018

Minutes were recorded for the meeting on September 12th, 2018 at the Great Valley High School Library, 225 N. Phoenixville Pike, Malvern, PA 19355. Meeting was held from 6:00 p.m. - 8:00 p.m.

Attendees were Pete Goodman, Carol Armstrong, Richard Findlay, Veda Maany, Daniel Walker, Greg Nesspor and guest Michael Churchill.

The meeting was called to order with Pete Goodman as the Chair.

Minutes of Previous meeting: These had been previously circulated and reviewed electronically. Findlay made a motion approve the minutes and Armstrong second that motion.

  1. Pete Goodman opened the discussion regarding Adelphia Gateway Project pipeline township responses to date, and next steps. Pete and Michael are both intervenors. There has been minimal response to date from Adelphia to our questions and concerns, particularly safety issues around the 2 blowdown valves. A citizen’s risk assessment has concluded that a valve site has the highest risk for explosion. Other concerns are related to the noise levels and substances potentially released into the environment. A solution could be alternative sites for the blowdown valves. There is also the issue of the recent heavy rainfalls and erosion affecting the environmental impact of the pipeline. Also, there is the question of the integrity of the existing pipeline to safely support volatile gasses when originally designed to transport oil 40 years ago. At this point in time, we concluded that it may be best to continue our communicative efforts to FERC and Adelphia on as individual basis as well as a group effort. We have had our notice published on the township website but additionally we can reach out to affected residents, especially those within 500 yards of the pipeline, and provide further guidance and streamline letter writing assistance with a sample letter laying out these technical questions. Also Lynda Farrell from Pipeline Safety Coalition is planning to hold a seminar in East Goshen Township to organize efforts. Senator Dinniman has also been collecting information and making sure there is regulatory examination. We concluded that our involvement with the Adelphia pipeline issues should not be conceived as “anti-pipeline” but rather, as our duty to protect our residents and environment ensuring that the project and construction is completed in a socially and environmentally responsible manner. If we cannot get answers from Adelphia before they proceed then can we ask the township to assist with legal counsel? We should also find out what Mark Thompson wrote as an intervenor. Goodman will meet informally with the Board to discuss this further. Pete will also draft the sample letter with bullet points for residents to use as a reference. Michael Churchill suggested asking simple questions, such as What is lifetime expectancy of this pipeline and how much does risk of corrosion increase– when do you need to start replacing it? Contact Linda to see if we can get this out with the next newsletter.
  2. Findlay reports the results of for Eagle Scouts projects poll – there was a 50% vote for buffer repair and 30% vote for bank erosion project. Richard offered to be the contact person for Scouts to contact to initiate the projects.
  3. Armstrong reports that she has not received any responses from PJ Whelihans’ restaurant after sending out 2 emails regarding education on single use plastics. We concluded that Walker and Armstrong will form a subcommittee to continue these educational efforts to local business in the township, and approaching The Office to see if they are interested.
  4. With regards to the turnpike sound wall, Goodman is organizing a meeting on the 17th of Sept. with a small group of 6-10 people to create a steering committee including Moskovitz (from GVA committee on sound walls), the Stevens, and Dan. The BoS have stated that they would like to be kept informed of updates and would support efforts appropriately. Proximity to the turnpike can result in a 20% reduction on the value of your property. Also, would like to prohibit Jake-brakes– other areas apply a fine for using them.
  5. We will create a subcommittee to contact Vicki Laubach and GVWA to begin planning and grant preparation of riparian buffer along Pigeon Creek on Brightside Farm to improve stream health. Subcommittee needs to bring this to the BoS for their approval. Goodman points out the plot across Yellow Springs Road from the farm is open space and has the creek in it as well that should be involved.
  6. We will take an unofficial poll on Charlestown day to see what topics would engage residents the most to create our Resident Environmental Education Series.
  7. We reviewed materials for EAC table at Charlestown Day. Volunteers are Armstrong, Findlay, Goodman and Maany. We hope to solicit new members for the EAC
  8. Findlay has still not received a response from PennDOT regarding information on the herbicides and the locations of their application within the township. A letter will be drafted and forwarded to Linda for BoS approval to send out to PennDOT district manager stating our concerns on behalf of the township. We have list of chemicals but don’t know which ones they use.
  9. For this quarterly (October) township newsletter. Findlay will submit an article on Septic systems and Goodman will draft the sample letter with bullet points regarding the Adelphia pipeline (see above- topic 1).
  10. Two EAC-initiated project for next 6+ months will be the rehabilitating the Brightside Farm riparian buffer and naming streams. We will make an action plan after confirming what streams/tributaries are already officially named. We are entertaining a November township field trip to familiarize ourselves with the streams in the township.

Other Updates.

Township Manager: Csete & Armstrong will attend County Recycling Meeting on 9/13.

Board of Supervisors– There was a discussion about the EAC appointing a tree tender leader and recruit volunteers to care for trees. This requires much maintenance beyond what we can offer, however, we could offer to interview contractors for them or try to find some local company. We can also offer to review any contracts that are proposed with a tree company. Another suggestion from Bos also is requesting the help with mosquito control due to excess water like installing Bat houses– this could be a scout project as well.

We agree to have an EAC table at the Charlestown precinct on election day, as suggested by Michael Churchill. We will discuss further at our next meeting.

Meeting was adjourned at 8 pm.