Vermont Passes Gas

Mr. Dillon Hamrell

Gas, when leaked from a methane pipeline, can cover a city before it’s noticed. It can coat a house without the owner realising it has company. It visits everywhere without being let in. As long as the gas is there it can harm the people in the house. It can affect daily life. When the gas is spotted a whole town can clear that day. It can move thousands of people in hours.

Vermont Gas Systems’ pipeline is proposed to be beyond the electric line. Trails and a sledding hill for Geprags Park are on the right. Photo courtesy of Burlington Free Press

In California 65,000 lbs of methane gas an hour is leaking from a pipe. This caused a several thousand person evacuation of thousands of homes. There is also a no fly zone above this because of the possibility that the methane could ignite. The leak could affect even more people because the gas is still leaking today. The gas being leaked has been going for months. It is a massive leak; one of the biggest in history.

California has a methane pipeline that carries natural gases around the state. These pipelines carry methane that can make a massive impact on the environment.The gas is invisible to the naked eye.

At the leak’s peak, it was spewing at about 72 million standard cubic feet of methane a day, which emitted the same amount of global warming pollution as driving 9 million cars a day, according to Tim O’Connor, who runs EDF’s oil and gas program in California.

Methane pollutes the environment 84 times worse than carbon, but stays in the atmosphere for a short period of time. Carbon can stay around for centuries, while methane stays around for only a couple years. However, it can still create changes in the climate and increase the temperature. “By emitting just a little bit of methane, mankind is greatly accelerating the rate of climatic change”. according to Steve Hamburg, EDF Chief Scientist.

“Methane is a really bad pollutant, it tends to have a bigger impact closer in than carbon, it doesn’t go as far,” said former New Jersey governor and EPA administrator Christine Todd Whitman, in an interview with Mashable. “[Methane] concentrates more and it’s more of an issue and people are gonna start to recognize that, and question again that while this is better certainly than coal, it’s not as good as we could be.”

Pipes of natural gases have a very high rate of leaks that cause these disasters. There are hundreds of pipes around the country. Vermont does not have one right now, but this will change shortly. There is a pipe being run down the state through Hinesburg this spring.

The pipelines can cause serious harm to the environment and to the people around the community. Builders will have to pay an estimated 165 million dollars.

This will not affect the taxes if people buy this,provided that people use the gas. This methane has a very high rate of leaking. Most pipes that are put in get a leak. These leaks are usually small but there is always a chance of a leak like the one in California. 

All of the methane in the Atmosphere is creating an unsafe environment for the people of Vermont. “This is not an issue that can be taken lightly” According to Mark Brownstein with EDF. With the probability that the pipe will leak and cause illnesses can affect many people.