Today’s Delaware Riverkeeper PennEast Stunt An Al Capone Vault Moment?

bob nolan reports on delaware riverkeeperBob Nolan
Wayne County, Pennsylvania, Landowner



The Delaware Riverkeeper is planning a stupid pet trick at today’s DRBC meeting, a stunt that seems likely to turn out to be its “Al Capone’s Vault” moment. 

Maya van Rossum, the mouthy radical who has designated herself as the Delaware Riverkeeper plans an incredibly stupid pet trick at today’s DRBC meeting. It’s a protest of the PennEast Pipeline to be implemented in bits by a carefully choreographed group of hangers-on who will do what their told and, one by one, stand up to read bits of a rambling diatribe Maya & Co have concocted. You can read the whole thing here and Maya’s detailed instructions here (including her strange “Pura vida” closing).

If you take the time to read it, you’ll probably wish you hadn’t but you’ll understand exactly what a joke the whole Delaware Riverkeeper operation really is. I suspect this stupid stunt could well become its Al Capone’s Secret Vault moment. There’s nothing there.

delaware roverkeeper

Once you’ve endured the pain and read Maya’s manifesto, think about what this document really is:

1.   The most obvious and glaring mistake Maya makes is that, bullet point by bullet point, she implores the Delaware River Basin Commission (DRBC) to regulate, and ultimately reject, a project the agency has no right to oversee. A pipeline is not a water project by any stretch of the imagination and there’s zero evidence building a pipeline (already subject to strict erosion and sedimentation and wetland rules) or running it under a river or stream would threaten water supplies.

2.   Maya offers zero support for her laundry list of assertions. From the first few bullet points:

It is impossible, from the materials submitted by PennEast, to directly determine how many stream crossings of Exceptional Value streams in Pennsylvania will involve open cuts in areas that are currently forested conditions, on public lands, on steep slopes or erosive soils, or any combination thereof ñ but all of these conditions can significantly impact water quality…


PennEast materials fail to consider important site specific conditions in determining pipeline location and suitability of construction methods to minimize impacts or protect water quality. For example, approximately 103 dry crossings of streams are in areas of severely erodible soils, approximately 34 of the stream dry crossings are in rugged terrain with slopes greater than 30, and other, often multiple and site specific constraints that increase the likelihood and potential for adverse water quality impacts are not individually or collectively considered in terms of water quality impacts in project documents


The synergistic implications of climate change and the PennEast pipeline on stream flows, quality, temperatures, health, and aquatic life were not assessed in PennEast documents.


The denial of any consideration of the combined effects of PennEast for recharge, groundwater and baseflow, coupled with the heightened anticipation of drought due to climate change, is a significant information gap.

One can sift through every one of Maya’s claims and see there’s not one iota of scientific documentation for any part of her screed….not a single footnote. The entire piece is anecdotal. She cites “fieldtruthing” and/or “groundtruthing” for most of their proffers, whatever they are. When she has nothing better, she relies on good, ol’ climate change hysteria; i.e., “the synergistic implications of climate change” or “the heightened anticipation of drought due to climate change.”

3.   There’s a ridiculous obsession with equating a pipeline road crossing to a water crossing, ultimately culminating with the completely unfounded posit that Penn East values a thoroughfare over a stream or river. Would it not be reasonable to conclude that drilling under rather than trenching a road might possibly limit detours, traffic delays and other inconveniences that would affect a significant number of citizens/motorists? And, did Maya footnote or address the increased carbon footprint for those traffic delays and mile of detours resulting in more emissions…??? No, she did not.

4.   There are repeated references to various pipeline projects in New Jersey as if they had any connection to, or revealed any, issues that could reasonably impact PennEast. Surprisingly, DAPL was not cited, too. This is an apples and oranges charade.

5.   There are several attempts to hold PennEast responsible for unauthorized ATV and other traffic on the pipeline right-of-way during construction and after completion. This from an organization that exhibits zero respect for, and frequently tramples on the private property and property rights of all the citizens of the Delaware River Basin. This, in fact, given the deep pockets of her funder, the William Penn Foundation, is de riguer and Maya’s raison d’etre.

6.   Of course, there’s also the elephant in the room:

“PennEast fails to consider the potential for encouraging shale gas extraction activities within the boundaries of the Delaware River watershed if the MORATORIUM against drilling were lifted.”

and more climate change BS…

“PennEast fails to consider combined adverse environmental impacts of climate change and the PennEast pipeline and the potential implications for the watershed and water resources”

The effort to assert PennEast would lead to more natural gas development and increased climate change is thinly veiled, vacuous and pathetic. Natural gas development, as is well known now, is responsible for the single largest (and unexpected) progress in reducing CO2 emissions anywhere at any time.

delaware riverkeeper

7.   How about this one….again, not a shred of evidence/documentation unless you count a laughable study by another anti-fracking shill group:

“The PennEast pipeline will inflict between 13.3 and and 56.6 billion dollars of economic impact including lost jobs, lost wages, lost taxes, reduced property values, lost ecosystem services and more. The PennEast pipeline would cause an initial loss of $7.3 million in ecosystem services during a one year construction period. For each year the pipeline is in operation, the pipeline would induce an additional loss of $2.4 million in ecosystem services due to conversion of land in the right of way”

8.  And, canoeing and kayaking, of course, are the most important industry on/along the river…

“PennEast fails to consider the adverse impacts to recreation and ecotourism due to healthy and attractive water resources in the watershed”

9.   Finally, we can’t forget the William Penn Foundation, the Rockefellers, the NRDC gang and all those selfish prigs who feel the river corridor, especially the Upper Delaware, is their private park for their enjoyment at the expense of every resident in the Delaware River Basin. After all, these are the select few seeking to drive the river basin citizen from his/her home and property…

“PennEast fails to consider the implications for future investment in open space preservation that is beneficial for water resource protection”

As you may have noticed, I’m no fan of the Delaware Riverkeeper. Interestingly, some folks from her neck of the woods feel the same. Here’s a beautiful letter that appeared in the Bucks County Courier the other day from a resident of that county:

Anti-Everything Obstructionists

Regarding the March 1 front-page headline about the proposed PennEast pipeline, the dirty little secret is that the Delaware Riverkeeper Network is nothing more than a conglomeration of self-important, anti-everything obstructionists who are neither elected nor appointed by anybody. Other than making outlandish statements and filing annoying lawsuits that delay and run up the costs of worthwhile projects, what is their purpose?

The notion that the Delaware River needs a “keeper” is kindergarten logic on display. I believe the Courier Times is being duped into parading this group as having some intrinsic mission, a modern-day Doan Gang without weapons.

Perhaps some bored citizens should start a “Planetkeeper” organization and set out to obtain the magical seal of authenticity: nonprofit status.

Bob Maxwell


I’d say Bob Maxwell has it right. May Maya’s stupid pet trick endure the same ridicule as Geraldo Rivera’s venture into Al Capone’s Secret Vault. It has the same authenticity.

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5 thoughts on “Today’s Delaware Riverkeeper PennEast Stunt An Al Capone Vault Moment?

  1. Thanks for the links tom…no need to post this but here is a letter I sent to paula

    Paula Repectively:

    Feel free to read this to the attendees if you so choose.

    I am pro energy, I believe all energy is essential and plays an important part in the betterment and quality of life for all mankind. I believe that there are benifits that come from both sides of the Natural Gas debate that includes:

    1) People involved and observing the debate have begun to realize the importance of reducing their carbon footprint.

    2) That more people then ever before have spoken up in favor and against fossil fuels including even solar and wind, the winning effect has been for all, tighter oversight on the industry, ground water awareness in pre and post drilling testing. And once again public debate over the pros and con.

    Paula there is so much more to the argument surrounding energy then I can list here both pro and con. That being said I believe the DRBC has spent the last several years doing their due dilligence on this matter and with all the positive science coming out daily, (there have been over 1 thousand papers in 2016 alone that debunk those against fossil fuels claims on emmissions, water pollution, and health effects including the claim of low birth weight in states drilling) some even paid for by the anti activist themselves.

    It is time for the DRBC to step back from the table and allow the good people of the DRB, who have had decades and generations of good land stewardship, excersize  their contribution to fuel the world Abroad, here at home, and to contribute to their local economy simply by excersizing their land rights wether it be natural gas, solar or wind farms.


                                    Sincerly – Victor Furman

    Victor Furman



    Sent from my Galaxy Tab® A

  2. There was a time that the riverkeeper network gave seminars on how to gain access to private property without being charged with trespassing. They would pretend to be birdwatchers.

  3. Interesting. One should consider that what Delaware River keeper has to say about the impact of Penn east, the process that the pipeline undergoes in order to be approved and more is what is being successfully transmitted to the public via multiple avenues and one of the most significant ways this happens is via press coverage. One should also consider that this is not so for only what Delaware River keeper says and the projects mentioned in this letter but for a multitude of pipeline projects either under review or recently built. The amount of misinformation and hyberbole that has reached the public is staggering.

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