Advocates, Affected Residents, & Concerned Citizens Urge Legislators to Oppose Birdsboro Power Plant & DTE Pipeline


December 15, 2017



Congressman Ryan Costello

840 North Park Road

Wyomissing, PA 19610


Congressman Pat Meehan

2004 Weaverton Road

Douglassville, PA 19518


Senator Bob Casey

2000 Market Street, Suite 610

Philadelphia, PA 19103


Senator Pat Toomey

8 Penn Center

1628 John F. Kennedy Blvd. Suite 1702

Philadelphia, PA 19103


Senator Judith Schwank

201 George Street Suite 201

Reading, PA 19605


Senator John Rafferty Jr

2325 Pottstown Pike

Pottstown, PA 19465


Senator Bob Mensch

56 West Fourth Street, Floor 2

Red Hill, PA 18076


Representative David Maloney

515 Old Swede Road Suite B2

Douglassville, PA 19518


Representative Ryan MacKenzie

3402 Brookside Road

Macungie, PA 18062




Re:  Birdsboro Power Plant/DTE Birdsboro pipeline


Dear Legislators:


In light of the “significant remaining contamination of PCBs and other hazardous substances at the site” of the proposed Birdsboro Power Plant and the terminus of the proposed DTE Birdsboro pipeline, we, the undersigned, are calling on you, our state and federal legislators, to support our demand for the denial of all remaining permits and certificates for both projects.


In written comments submitted to both the DEP and FERC and in testimony given at the DEP’s public hearing in October, we have voiced concerns over contamination extant on the site. We have never been able to get an accurate description of the state of the site, something that is particularly concerning because of the power plant’s unusually close proximity to residences. The filing made by Birdsboro Power LLC on November 21st provides additional details into ongoing problems, including asbestos materials in 16 buildings, unspecified hazardous materials located throughout the site, PCBs and other unspecified contaminants at levels higher than state health standards, and PCB-, VOC-, and SVOC-laced water in sumps and pits at levels higher than state health standards. It is the clearest picture we have received to date and it is one that only heightens our concerns.


These revelations come as the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission is concluding the public comment period on the Environmental Assessment that concluded, “Based on the analysis contained within this EA, we have determined that if DTE constructs and operates the proposed facilities in accordance with its application and supplements and our recommended mitigation measures, approval of this proposal would not constitute a major federal action significantly affecting the quality of the human environment.” They come as the Department of Environmental Protection prepares to issue water quality certifications. And they come as work is already underway on the projects that have not received all of the required regulatory approvals.


As we’re sure you know, one worker on the site was injured just days before the case was filed by Birdsboro Power LLC when the track loader he was operating punctured a canister of chlorine gas. It is other side of the exaggerated jobs story too many of you tout.


We have raised many other issues with both projects, any one of which provides more than enough justification to end these dangerous and potentially deadly projects. The Birdsboro Power Plant is just one of at least 48 the DEP has approved since January of 2014. As the rest of the world is working to speed the transition away from fossil fuels, Pennsylvania’s government persists in its foolhardy preoccupation with a fuel whose main ingredient has a Global Warming Potential 86 times that of CO2. Its role as a bridge fuel has been demythologized time and again by credible climate scientists, including Dr. Robert Howarth of Cornell University who has testified before Pennsylvania legislators and met with Governor Tom Wolf. In his press conference at COP 23 in Bonn, Germany, he said that “methane is an important greenhouse gas and is currently responsible for an amount of global warming equal to approximately 60% of that caused by carbon dioxide. Methane reductions offer one of the few available approaches to immediately slow the rate of global warming, since the climate responds more quickly to decreases in methane compared to carbon dioxide.”


There is no upside to projects that put our health, safety, and environment at risk in the short term and exacerbate a problem that puts future generations’ ability to survive at risk in the long term. We call on you to stand with those you represent and help us stop the Birdsboro Power Plant and DTE Birdsboro pipeline.






Karen Feridun, Founder, Berks Gas Truth, on behalf of the undersigned


Organizational Signers
Arianne Elinich Springfield Township Bucks Founder, Bucks County CCAP
Sharon Furlong Lower Southampton Township Bucks Spokesperson, Bucks Environmental Action
Maya K. Van Rossum Delaware River


Delaware River


The Delaware Riverkeeper, Delaware Riverkeeper Network
Martha A. Costello Robeson Township Berks Secretary, Hay Creek Watershed Association
Faith Zerbe Washington Schuylkill Co-Founder, Schuylkill Pipeline Awareness


William H. Adams Oley Berks
Susan Ader East Cocalico Lancaster
Bethany Ayers Fisher Cumru Berks
Charyn Ayoub Maxatawny Berks
Donna Bagenstose Leesport Berks
Pamela Bateson Union Berks
Valerie Berg Spring Township Berks
Melanie Bernstiel Birdsboro Berks
Susan Bigelow Tilden Township Berks
Gwen Blatt South Heidelberg Berks
Peter D. Buckland Ferguson Township Centre
Joyce Calvitti Upper Fredrick Montgomery
Sarah Caspar Downingtown Chester
Elizabeth Cates Bern Twp Berks
Edward Cavey Westtown Chester
Richard Ceruolo Annapolis, MD. Anne Arundel
Sarah Chudnovsky Cumru Berks
Thomas N. Church Forks Township Northampton
Kevin Claypoole Rockland Township Berks
Michael Coates Amity Berks
Sebastian Coates Amity Berks
Noah Coates Amity Berks
John Cole Union Berks
Brian Colleran Schwenksville Montgomery
Paul David Kutztown Berks
MaryEllen Davidson Reading Berks
David A DeWalt Mohnton Berks
Jamie Diamond Exeter Township Berks
Kirsten Diedrich Reading Berks
Carol Anne Donohoe Maidencreek Township Berks
Marie Duarte Reading Berks
Robert Dudash Spring Berks
Rebeckia Eagle District Township Berks
Alexander Eby Robeson Twp Berks
Jake Engel Amity Berks
Stephanie Engel Amity Township Berks
Jan Ferry Birdsboro Berks
Elizabeth H. Fields Wyomissing Berks
Susanne Fiori Oley Township Berks
Colleen Fitzgerald Albany Township Berks
Anita Forrester Palmer Northampton
Tabitha Frable Robeson Berks
Susan Gage Amity Township Berks
Sara C. Gallen Shillington Berks
Sharon Garlena Frederick, MD Frederick
Ronald Gering New Hope Bucks
Sherrie Greene Exeter Township Berks
Kenneth Greene Exeter Township Berks
Mari-Frances Greipp Upper Dublin Twp Montgomery
Jim Greipp Upper Dublin Montgomery
Terry Griffith Oley Berks
Louise Grim St Lawrence Berks
Raffaela Gualtieri Spring Township Berks
Deborah Guldin Wernersville Berks
Randy Gyory Kempton Berks
Sharon Hajj Union Berks
Sharon D. Hamill Amity Berks
Jennifer Hanf Centre Township Berks
Nancy Harkins Westtown Chester
Annie Hasz Robeson Township Berks
Dawn M. Heinbach Greenwich Township Berks
Laura Henkle-Sauer St. Lawrence Berks
Lori Hilbert Lehigh Twp Northampton
Joseph Bruce Huber Latrobe Westmoreland
Walt Hug Robeson Twp Berks
Catherine James Lower Alsace Berks
Michelle L. Johnson Robeson Berks
Dyanne E. Jurin Lower Frederick Montgomery
Paula Kahl South Heidelberg Berks
Patience Kaltenbach Robeson Township Berks
Nancy Kauffman Birdsboro Berks
Jim Keller West Reading Berks
Kate Kennedy Birdsboro Berks
Gail Kessler Oley Berks
Brandon Kirkwood Sinking Springs Berks
Terri Kline Reading Berks
Carrie Kline Elkins, WV Randolph
Laura Knapp Shillington Berks
Linda Krause Wyomissing Berks
Carrie LaRiviere Exeter Township Berks
Edward Ledwith Wyomissing Berks
Linda A. Lehman Spring Berks
Amy L. Levengood Amity Township Berks
Beverly Leviner Bern Twp Berks
Aidan Levinson Upper Milford Lehigh
Mark Lichty Smithfield Monroe
John M. Loomis Centre Twp. Berks
Linda Lori Bern Twp. Berks
Jennie E. Maher Wyomissing Berks
Kevin Mahoney Perkasie Bucks
Kathy L. Mallow West Reading Berks
Alexa Manning Uwchlan Chester
Dean H. Marshall Benton Columbia
Dany Martinez Reading Berks
Raymond A. Mazurek Spring Township Berks
Katherine McGilvray Cumru Township Berks
Michael McGilvray Cumru Township Berks
Pamela McIntyre Exeter Berks
Elizabeth Mosteller Amity Township Berks
Margaret O. Moyer Hartley Township Union
Joseph U. Murray Lower Alsace Berks
Heather Goodman Nelson Amity Township Berks
Paul Nathaniel Nelson Amity Berks
Karen Obold Amity Berks
Joe O’Leary Cumru Berks
Jean Olivett Emporium Cameron
Yvonne Frey Oppenheimer Wyomissing Berks
Shannon Owens Exeter Township Berks
Jane Palmer Wyomissing Berks
Audrey Pawling Reading Berks
Angela Renee Pennypacker Birdsboro Berks
Diane Quick Birdsboro Berks
Michele Reese Lower Alsace Berks
Deborah Rhoads Pike Berks
Jeffry C. Rhoads Pike Township Berks
Patrick Rider Amity Berks
Eloise M. Roecker Elverson Chester
Nancy Roecker Coates Amity Berks
Patti Rose Lower Alsace Berks
Patrick Rose Lower Alsace Berks
Stephen Rudick Union Twp Berks
Donna Rudick Union Twp Berks
Sara Scarborough Lower Frederick Montgomery
Dorothy Schieber Bernville Berks
Lisa Schnell Maxatawny Berks
Karen Schweitzer Sinking Spring Boro Berks
Susan Shaak St. Lawrence Berks
Sally Sinclair-Hubbard Exeter Township Berks
Christopher Smith Robeson Berks
Rori Smith Lower Frederick Township Montgomery
Sara Smith Wyomissing Boro Berks
Frederick Stine Haddon Township Camden
Jim Sukeena Quakertown Bucks
Elaine Swavely Muhlenberg Berks
Jay Sweeney Falls Township Wyoming
Nancy C. Tate Borough Of Riegelsville Bucks
Joanne Telenko Rockland Township Berks
Ellen Tiberino Philadelphia Philadelphia
Verna K. Trexler Wyomissing Berks
Cindy K. Tricoski Bechtelsville Berks
Diane Truman West Rockhill Twp Bucks
Todd J. Underwood Kutztown Berks
Nicole Vanart Exeter Berks
Adele Wallace Reading Berks
Siobhan Walsh-Bonis Kutztown Lehigh
Mary Jo Weishampel Wernersville Berks
Amy White Wyomissing Berks
JoAnn Williams Middletown Delaware
Millicent S. Wilson Richmond Berks
Faith Zerbe Upper Darby Delaware
Joanne Zieger-Kosloski South Heidelberg Twp. Berks




Cc: Governor Tom Wolf