Six members of Sustainable Medina County attend the Medina County commissioners Tuesday at the administration building. Front row, from left: Ed Radke and Mary Emhoff. Back row, from left: Kathie Jones, Keith Rasey, Pauline Chapman and Phyllis Radke.
BOB FINNAN / GAZETTE Enlarge
MEDINA — A grassroots organization opposed to the NEXUS pipeline project in Medina County still would like county commissioners to help pay for air testing near a compressor station in Guilford Township.
But there is just one little thing: The NEXUS compressor station at 8707 Guilford Road is close to being operational and commissioners have repeatedly said no.
In less than a week, natural gas could be pumped through the compressor station on its way to Canada.
“Construction of the NEXUS (pipeline) project is in the final stages and remains on track for an in-service around the end of this month,” NEXUS spokesman Adam Parker said in an email.
“At the Wadsworth compressor station, commissioning activities and site work will continue through the week.”
NEXUS has conducted ongoing testing at the site to see if there are any leaks. So far, none have been no reported.
Parker did not respond to follow-up questions in an email.
Sustainable Medina County has been turned down by commissioners to help pay for baseline air monitoring done by the Southwest Pennsylvania Environmental Health Project. Southwest did some testing last fall before the compressor station was built.
The group raised $9,500 for the tests, Sustainable Medina County spokesman Kathie Jones said.
“We thought it was important enough to know the air is clear here and will it stay clear, and if people will still have a chance to be healthy and live in Medina County,” Jones said Tuesday.
Nathan Ribar, the environmental health educator at Southwest, said in August that the organization tested for acetone, chloromethane, dichlorodifluromethane, naphthalene and formaldehyde levels within a few miles of the compressor station.
The components were detected during the tests, but below levels of concerns, Ribar said at the time.
Once the compressor station is operational, the group wants to conduct another test to check for emissions again. The compressor station will help push the natural gas through the pipeline onto its final destination.
That will cost an additional $9,500.
“We need to let public know every 32 hours those toxins will be blowing in the air,” Jones said.
The group has been steadfast in its opposition of the pipeline and taking on what they perceive to be criticisms along the way. Jones asked Commissioner Adam Friedrick on Tuesday about a comment he made at a previous meeting.
“You asked if the group was nonpartisan,” the Sharon Township resident said about Sustainable Medina County. “I just wanted to remind you that the toxins from this compressor station are nonpartisan. They are going to affect everyone, no matter what.”
Jones also said she wanted to clear up a misconception that the Akron Regional Air Quality Management District previously conducted air testing at the compressor station.
That’s not been the case, she said. She said she received a letter from Sam Rubens, administrator of the air quality district, that said no sampling has been done at the site and there are no plans to do so.
She provided the letter from Rubens to the commissioners dated Sept. 18.
Jones also asked commissioners if any emergency plans are in place if there are any leaks or explosions at the compressor station.
“There’s a great chance of that,” she said. “There are a lot of residents affected by that. There will be leaks. How will they be notified to get to safety and to protect their children?”
Friedrick said there are several non-NEXUS gas pipelines already in the county.
“There are pipelines crisscrossing the county now,” he said. “The same emergency management procedures have been in place. There has been some training done by NEXUS. It’s not completely different. It’s the same thing.”
Friedrick said the Medina County Office of Emergency Management office would handle any disaster plans in the county.
NEXUS, first proposed in August 2014, is a business partnership of Detroit-based DTE Energy and Spectra Energy, which is owned by Calgary, Alberta-based Enbridge Inc. The pipeline will travel through almost a dozen Ohio counties, into Michigan and then to a hub in Canada.
In other county commissioners news
- The Medina County Animal Shelter will host an Adopt-a-Thon from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 13, at 6334 Deerview Lane, Lafayette Township. The shelter is trying to find forever homes for its animals. Dogs and cats will be available for adoption from the Animal Shelter, Medina County Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals, One of a Kind Pets and the Way County Dog Shelter. There will be a donation-based bake sale and raffle baskets, with all proceeds benefitting the animal shelter.
- The Medina County Drug Task Force received an Edward Byrne Memorial Justice Assistance Grant in the amount of $37,500 from the Office of Criminal Justice Services. It will be used for vehicle maintenance ($5,000), motor vehicle ($7,500), utilities ($5,440) and rent ($19,560).
- Commissioners commended Julie Yergin, who is retiring from the Medina County Treasurer’s office Friday after 29 years. She also worked six years in the Medina County Data Center.
- Officials: Alert system in place is sufficient for NEXUS
- Boards of elections, secretary of state sued over ballot rejections
- NEXUS, Sustainable Medina County debate emissions
- Quality of air tested near NEXUS pipeline
- NEXUS honors request to protect plant
- NEXUS pipeline protested
- Worker hurt at NEXUS pipeline construction site
- Town hall talks air quality concerns of NEXUS compressor
- NEXUS grant money used on workforce development
- NEXUS pipeline to generate millions in tax revenue
- NEXUS dedicates repair money
- Judge dismisses NEXUS lawsuit
- Lafayette Twp. resident questions pipeline route
- Expert urges commissioners to help fund NEXUS testing
- State official ensures oversight of NEXUS
- U.S. appeals court orders halt on NEXUS pipeline (BREAKING)
- Medina County won't pay for air-quality tests near NEXUS station
- Activists to Medina County: Pay for air quality tests for NEXUS pipeline
- Ohio city refuses to give up fight against gas pipeline