Public Input Hearing Turns Into Gas Compressor Protest

Posted at 8:08 PM, Nov 15, 2016
and last updated 2016-11-15 21:16:28-05

Dozens of people protested proposed gas compressor stations at a public hearing with the Tennessee Department of Environment and Conservation.

The protesters came by the bus loads - many Joelton and Cane Ridge residents who have made it their mission to fight the proposed gas compressors in their communities showed up at the Snodgrass Tennessee Tower Tuesday for the public hearing.
Recently, Metro passed an air quality zoning ordinance which makes it illegal to build or erect any structure that will increase the amount of pollution without a construction permit. It would directly impact the areas where gas companies are looking to build.

"It will effect our breathing," one protestor said. "This past Wednesday I was told I've been cured of lymphoma cancer, I don't particularly want to get it again," said another.

It's up to the State's Air Pollution Control Board on whether to include that ordinance in the State Implementation Plan or SIP. That is what Tuesday's public hearing was about, but TDEC officials got an earful about the compressors none the less.

A handful of elected officials spoke to the State officials, all of them asked they include the ordinance into the SIP.

Gas companies have gone on record saying what the State is considering is not legal, that the federal government prohibits local governments from regulating natural gas companies through zoning.

Everyone's comments Tuesday will be handed over to the Air Board, which has the final say.