Who is Eight Rivers Council?
Eight Rivers Council is a group of County residents who are working to get good, solid information for Pocahontas County citizens about what deep-well natural gas means to our economy, our water and our way of life. We’re using our resources to get answers to questions about gas leases and deep drilling, pipeline projects, and to cut through the hype and the rumors. Do gas drilling and/or pipeline projects that compromise our scenic, ecological, and community assets strengthen or diminish our current and long-range vitality? We all need to know the facts.
Because all humans share the need for clean water, Pocahontas County, WV, headlands for eight rivers, has a special responsibility for preserving and protecting this most precious resource. Eight Rivers Council focuses on improving the land, water and air of Pocahontas County, WV through community action and education.
Why Eight Rivers Council Started
Eight Rivers Counciil started years ago when land speculators were leasing lands for Marcellus Shale gas fracking. Eight Rivers Council spurred citizen petitions, educational seminars, and local government involvement. The gas speculation folded due to communicy opposition and poor potential profitablity.
Later, Eight Rivers Council opposed the proposed Atlantic Coast Pipeline (ACP) that would cut through our steep mountains and pristine streams. Eight Rivers Council sponsored education teach-ins, water monitoring, and advocacy. The ACP folded before much construction was done.
In recent years Eight Rivers Council has opposed a proposed NIOSH Mine to Research Safety at Mace. While the project need might be laudable, many of us feel the location is unsuitable due to the geology, hydrology, and community safety.
Families who have lived in Pocahontas County for generations can hardly believe that our future water supplies might be contaminated. The County has very little industry. Rivers start here, so we don’t get pollution from upstream towns or businesses. What could possibly threaten our waters?
Most of us enjoy, and many of us depend on, clean water that comes from a spring or well. Natural, untreated water. People who don’t live here pay a premium for the kind of pure water we get for free.
The threat to our water is real. Deep-well gas drilling fluids, and the wells themselves, would contaminate water supplies. There are many examples from around the nation. Even in Texas, where oil and gas are their economic lifeblood, laws are being passed to protect groundwater from deep-well contamination. But not here in West Virginia. Not in the state that prides itself as being “Wild and Wonderful”. Not in the County that’s the “Birthplace of Rivers.”
We all want more jobs and economic growth; but the first step toward greater prosperity is to build on, not destroy, the assets we already have. Our most important natural asset is clean water.
Goverance at this point has been established by acclaim. Co-founders were Cyla Allison, President, and Beth Little, Treasurer. Allen Johnson has succeeded Cyla who backed off some due to health challenges. Nathaniel Dane Sizemore first set up the website and Facebook page, which is currently operated by Allen Johnson. Eight Rivers Council is not a 501-c-3 corporation, although this is open for consideration. No one on governance has received any compensation for time or expenses. Eight Rivers Council database is about 350 as of this writing. Note that over 700 signed our petition several years ago requesting the County Commission institute a moratorium on fracking.
Joining Eight Rivers Council is by agreeing with the overarching mission. Invitation to meetings, receiving emails and calls to action,and bringing initiatives from “members” is what joining means. Please send your name and email address to receive periodic email news updates. You will not be solicited for donations.
Eight Rivers Council invites new leadership. Please volunteer.
For more information, or to give us all a hand, or to offer your leadership skills an availability, contact Allen Johnson or Beth Little.
Contributions or official mail can be sent to to following address:
Eight Rivers Council, P.O. Box 282, Hillsboro, West Virginia 24946
|Allen Johnson, President
12664 Frost Road,
Dunmore, WV 24934304-799-4137
Beth Little, Treasurer