Friday, January 3, 2014

Welcome To The Debate

Welcome To The Debate

First, a little background on me.
My name is John L. Wathen. I am a clean water advocate and photo/ video amateur journalist. I have covered such disasters as the Kingston Coal Ash disaster in Kingston Tenn. Dec. 2008.

I followed that same coal ash home to Alabama where I further documented the environmental injustice inflicted on the people living just outside Uniontown Alabama.

At the time, this was considered to be the largest man-made environmental disaster in American history. More pollution was released from that dam failure than oil lost in the Exxon Valdez disaster in Alaska.

In 2010, I was once again heading to the newest man-made disaster in US history. The Deepwater Horizon exploded and sank killing 11 men and polluting the Gulf of Mexico with unprecedented amount of crude oil that is still causing havoc there today. Everything from infant mortality in the Dolphin population to lesions, respiratory illness, cancer, and a myriad of other issues.

Photo Karen Savage
My first exposure to Bakken Crude was when my good friend and SouthWings pilot, Tom Hutchings called to ask me to help him document  a new pipeline and oil tank farm being planned for Downtown Mobile Alabama.  It would be impossible to see the route without an airplane to get that "Birdseye view"

I have used SouthWings many times over the years and owe them a great deal of appreciation for their help. Kudos to Hume and the crew.

In 2010, I was awarded the Roosevelt Ash Society "Outstanding Journalist in Conservation" for these reports.

In 2012, I was awarded the most prestigious award given to any water advocate, the 2012, River Network "River Hero Award"

It is not my intention to take sides or debate the pros and cons of either pipelines over tank cars for transport. This is about Bakken Crude and the known problems surrounding this relatively unknown product. All opinions stated and my work on the Bakken Crude Debate are mine and mine alone. They do not represent any organization I am affiliated with.

Posted below is my first installment of the Bakken Crude Debate. Oil from the Bakken Fields in North Dakota as well as Canadian Tar Sands is already being shipped to Mobile Alabama. This is about Bakken Crude and the potential for catastrophic explosions due to the unstable and quite volatile nature of the product.

TAR SANDS OIL MOBILE Exposes pipeline fiasco 


"With all the talk about tar sands oil coming to Mobile Alabama and the lack of current information about the pipeline leading from Pascagoula Miss to the Downtown Mobile terminals to be built there I felt the need to expose it for what it is.

The pipeline crosses the Big Creek Lake basin where Mobile gets it's drinking water. In fact this oil pipeline crosses within less than 1/2 mile from the intake pump for the drinking water of thousands of Mobile residents.
The new storage tanks will be located less than 1/4 mile from a densely populated housing project and just over 500 feet from the head of Royal Street in Downtown Mobile"

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