WV Hare Krishnas Settle with Rover Pipeline, Crossing Commune

Here’s an interesting story. A religious commune of Hare Krishnas in Marshall County, WV steadfastly refused to sign an easement with Rover Pipeline to allow the pipeline across ~3,000 feet of commune-owned property. Rover had offered the Krishnas $7,000 for the easement, but no dice. You may recall that the Krishnas have no problem accepting oil and gas money, and have done so by leasing their land for shale drilling–even though the official view of the Krishnas is that “gas drilling is exploitative, that it is unsustainable and ‘contributes to the culture of death and toxicity’” (see WV Hare Krishnas “Purify” Gas Money to Benefit Commune). Apparently when there’s enough money involved, official Krishna doctrine changes. Back to Rover. On Tuesday, the Krishnas filed a lawsuit in federal court to block Rover from using eminent domain to enter the property to cut trees–a lawsuit based on religious grounds. A hearing was held on Thursday in federal court in Wheeling. The Krishnas loaded a bunch of followers into a fossil fuel-belching van to cart them to the court house to protest and make a scene. Lots of publicity. The judge granted a brief recess to allow the two sides to talk, and following the recess the Krishnas and Rover announced they had signed a deal. The official line is that Rover is changing the route of the pipeline to avoid certain holy places on Krishna property. The pipeline will now traverse MORE Krishna property–nearly twice as much more (5,300 feet). So much for objecting to the pipeline based on “religious” grounds, right? What is not mentioned, conspicuously so, is how much more money the Krishnas were able to get out of Rover, so Rover could make the bad publicity go away…

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