Blue Ridge Environmental Defense League

Janet Marsh Zeller

It is with deep sadness that we announce the passing of our Founder, Janet Marsh Zeller. Janet was a remarkable woman and will be deeply missed by many. Please keep her husband, Lou Zeller, and her family close in thought and prayer. Condolences may be sent to Louis Zeller, PO Box 88, Glendale Springs NC 28629. In lieu of flowers, people may make donations to BREDL earmarked for the Janet Marsh Honorary Fund.

In Remembrance of Janet


League Fund

Honors Founder

The Blue Ridge Environmental Defense League Board of Directors has established a fund to honor the work of Janet Marsh Zeller, who founded the Blue Ridge Environmental Defense League and served as its executive director for 28 years. The honorary fund supports the ongoing mission of the Blue Ridge Environmental Defense League. Individual gifts accepted throughout the year. All donations to BREDL are tax-deductible.

More Details | Donate to Fund

No Trespassing, No Surveying Sign

Pipeline: No Trespassing No Surveying Sign to post on your property. For use in Virginia, West Virginia and North Carolina

No Trespassing Sign

Safeguard America's Resources

Fact Sheets:


Atlantic Coast Pipeline

Fracking Waste

Fracking Lease Risks

Social Impacts of Gas Fracking

Liquefied Natural Gas Export Terminals+Pipelines+Fracking Equals MORE FRACKING PIPELINES!

Natural Gas Compressor Stations
Air Pollution, Explosions and Fires

Opportunities for Action Environmental Permits

What's All The Fuss About Fracking? - an update

Chemical Disclosure Resolution Template to Protect Local Right-to-Know

BREDL has drafted a resolution template calling for full disclosure of chemicals to be used, stored, and transported at fracking sites, and we hope that groups across the state will adopt this resolution so that it can be presented to local governments in with support from their respective communities. The resolution is designed to be passed among organizations and local governments who can write in their own names and official status. We are asking that local groups adopt and share the resolution widely as an organizing tool in your communities.

Resolution Template
Resolution signed by BREDL Board


Help BREDL hold Duke Energy accountable for the responsible management of their toxic waste. Please sign BREDL's petition to tell NC Gov. McCrory: "Don't Dump Coal Ash on Our Communities!"

Don''t Dump Coal Ash Petition

Coal Ash Disposition
The Alternative for North Carolina

BREDL's technical report which details the dangers of landfilling coal ash and recommends the proven saltstone technology for the coal ash at Duke Energy's fourteen power plants. The report entitled "Coal Ash Disposition: The Alternative for North Carolina," describes the saltstone technology which would encase the coal ash waste and isolate the toxins from the soil, air and water.

View BREDL Technical Report

No Fracking In Stokes

No Trespassing Sign

Hydrofracking: No Trespassing No Seismic Testing Sign to post on your property

No Trespassing Sign

What's All The Fuss About Fracking?

This BREDL report highlights the main issues with hydrofracking. Updated December 2013

Download the Report

BREDL Chapters

BREDL welcomes these new chapters:

Rabun Gap Chapter (Rabun Co., GA) - January 2019

No Snow Camp Mine (Alamance Co., NC) - January 2019

Northampton County Citizens Against Coal Ash (Northampton Co., NC) - July 2018

Woodsdale Concerned Citizens Group (Person Co., NC) - January 2018

Safeguard America's Resources

Documents Reveal North Carolina Governor Colluding with Atlantic Coast Pipeline to Monitor Pipeline Opponents

Feb. 11, 2019: Documents obtained through the North Carolina Public Records Act by Blue Ridge Environmental Defense League (BREDL) show that the Cooper administration is collaborating with the Atlantic Coast Pipeline (ACP) in their surveillance of opponents statewide and in communities impacted by the pipeline. The records came from the Department of Public Safety (DPS).

Press Release

Safeguard America's Resources | Safe Energy

BREDL Comments to NC Utilities Commission

Feb. 4, 2019: BREDL calls upon the NC Utilities Commission to reject the Integrated Resource Plan submitted by Dominion Energy North Carolina and require a cleaner, smarter plan. And we support similar calls directed towards Duke Energy’s plan.

BREDL Comments

BREDL Press Release

We’ve Seen Northam’s Racism Before

Feb. 4, 2019: Union Hill resident and BREDL chapter Concern for the New Generation (CNG) member, Ruby Laury spoke clearly and calmly, “Governor Northam must resign. I don’t condemn him, but he must resign.” In a statement released by Blue Ridge Environmental Defense League’s Executive Director Louis Zeller said, “We’ve seen the vulgar racism exhibited by Governor Northam in his medical school yearbook before. It is no less harmful than that of the battle-flag crowd. Both have significant, pernicious and negative consequences on people’s lives.”

Press Release

BREDL Statement regarding Virginia Governor Ralph Northam

Feb. 4, 2019: The vulgar racism exhibited by the governor in medical school is no less harmful than that of the battle-flag crowd. Both have significant, pernicious and negative consequences on people’s lives. In the recent Union Hill compressor station debate, racism was side-stepped. It can no longer be avoided. The governor’s motives may be unclear, but his actions are not. His failure to recognize abhorrent behavior in medical school is mirrored by his similarly hurtful actions directed at the residents of Union Hill. The pattern is striking. Governor Northam’s racist blind spot is a feature of his actions, then and now. He should step down.

Clean Air

BREDL requests Madison County, NC Board of Health to adopt a resolution recommending a new asphalt plants moratorium

On January 31, 2019, we presented a letter of request to the Madison County Board of Health. At the meeting, the medical director made some very disconcerting comments: that asphalt plant pollution is less worrisome than second-hand cigarette smoke. Clearly, many people do not understand the gravity of the air pollution problem posed by asphalt manufacturing in mountain regions. We are planning to bring the issue up again at the County Commissioners meeting on February 12.

View Letter to Madison County Board of Health

Safeguard America's Resources

How long has it been since VA SWCB voted to hold a public hearing on revoking the MVP 401 certification and VA DEQ has not scheduled this hearing?

Check out our counter as we continue to wait for VA DEQ to schedule this public hearing

Counter: Time Elapsed Since SWCB Vote

Safeguard America's Resources

BREDL sends letter to VA DEQ inquiring about delay in scheduling Public Hearing regarding MVP 401 Certification revocation

Jan. 16, 2019: The letter reads, "I would like an explanation why a date for the hearing to begin the process regarding revocation of the 401 water certification for the proposed Mountain Valley Pipeline has not been set.

It seems the Virginia Department of Environmental Quality (VADEQ) is attempting to slow walk the direction given to you by the State Water Control Board (SWCB) at its December 13, 2018 meeting. This is an important meeting to prevent further degradation of the waters of the Commonwealth. As you are well aware, MVP has perpetrated over 300 violations by its poor construction methods and soil & erosion techniques through November 14, as described by your own staff. These violations resulted in a lawsuit filed by the Attorney General. Yet over a month after the direction given to VADEQ staff by the SWCB, this meeting has not been scheduled."

View Letter to VA DEQ

Safeguard America's Resources

BREDL Lambasts Citizen Board for its Decision to Approve Air Permit for Atlantic Coast Pipeline Compressor Station

Jan. 8, 2019: Richmond, VA—The Blue Ridge Environmental Defense League (BREDL) lambasted the citizen State Air Pollution Control Board (SAPCB) today for its approval of the air permit for the Buckingham compressor station for the proposed Atlantic Coast Pipeline. Kathie Mosley, BREDL Vice President and chair of Union Hill’s Chapter, Concern for the New Generation, called the decision “a travesty.” Mosley shared, “Those of us who live in Union Hill have been ignored through the entire permitting process. We had hoped the Air Board would acknowledge the fact that we are an Environmental Justice community. This won’t stop us from fighting. We will consider challenging the decision in court.”

View Press Release

BREDL calls out Virginia Department of Environmental Quality For attempts to Erase the Black Lives of Union Hill Residents

Jan. 3, 2019: Lovingston, VA—The Blue Ridge Environmental Defense League (BREDL) today called out the Virginia Department of Environmental Quality (DEQ) for its attempts to erase the lives and history of the Union Hill community while misleading the State Air Pollution Control Board (SAPCB) regarding the proposed compressor station site for Dominion Atlantic Coast Pipeline.

View Press Release | BREDL Comments - Barker | BREDL Comments - Ponton | BREDL Report Card | BREDL Fact Sheet

Safeguard America's Resources

League Requests Virginia Attorney General Seek Injunctive Relief - States MVP 401 Certification is invalid as work continues

Dec. 20, 2018: Today, an attorney for the Blue Ridge Environmental Defense League sent a request to Virginia Attorney General Mark Herring urging that he “move the court for injunctive relief” regarding work on the Mountain Valley Pipeline. The request states, “MVP is clearing land and burying pipe even though it is not possible to grow grass this time of year. The company consistently acts in callous disregard of the law even in the face of a lawsuit for the violations. The construction must stop while the action for violating the law is litigated.”

View Press Release | View Letter to Attorney General Herring

Safeguard America's Resources

Brice Law Firm sends letter on behalf of BREDL to Governor Roy Cooper in nearly year-long effort to receive public records

Dec. 14, 2018: A letter has been sent on behalf of BREDL by the Brice Law Firm to the office of Governor Roy Cooper in the nearly year-long effort to receive public records regarding the Atlantic Coast Pipeline. BREDL’s request to Governor Cooper is requesting information regarding the Memorandum of Understanding between ACP and Governor Cooper.

View Letter to Governor Cooper

Safeguard America's Resources | Clean Air

League Takes Governor Northam to Task
Over Compressor Station Vote
Statewide Radio Ad Campaign Launched

Dec. 14, 2018: Today the Blue Ridge Environmental Defense League announced a statewide radio ad campaign targeting Governor Ralph Northam’s interference in the air permitting decision on the proposed natural gas compressor station slated for Buckingham County.

The 30-second spot is being aired on WRVA-AM News Radio, Virginia’s most powerful AM radio station. The ad asks the Governor to explain his sudden dismissal of two members of the State Air Pollution Control Board who questioned the site suitability of the proposed Atlantic Coast Pipeline compressor station in Buckingham’s Union Hill community. The roots of this site date back to the 1860’s when freedmen established this largely African-American farming community after the Civil War.

View Press Release | Listen to the ad.

Safeguard America's Resources

BREDL Comments before the
Virginia State Water Control Board

Dec. 13, 2018: The Virginia State Water Control Board voted to hold a public hearing to consider revoking the 401 certification for the Mountain Valley Pipeline. At the SWCB meeting, over twenty citizens spoke in favor of revoking the 401 certification. The date for the public hearing has not been announced.

Read BREDL's Comments before the Board

Fall 2018

The League Line: Winter 2019 issue is now available online.

What if Blue Ridge Environmental Defense League earned a donation every time you searched the Internet? Or how about if a percentage of every purchase you made online went to support our cause? Well, now it can!

Sign the Petition

Make Radiation Visible Petition

Bellefonte Efficiency & Sustainability Team (BEST) Mothers Against Tennessee River Radiation (MATRR) - Because It Matters

BREDL Fact Sheets

Most Recent:

Updated Aug 2016 BREDL Fact Sheet - Proposed Buckingham Compressor Station, Buckingham County, VA

May 2016: BREDL Unequal Protection Fact Sheet The Pipeline & Hazardous Materials Safety Administration’s Discriminatory Laws & Regulations

April 2016 BREDL Fact Sheet - Small Modular Reactors

Sept. 2015 BREDL Fact Sheet - Appalachian Materials, LLC Proposed Asphalt Plant in Glendale Springs, NC.

March 2014: BREDL Fact Sheet: "Don't Dump Coal Ash on our Communities"

More Fact Sheets:

A chronological list of Fact Sheets can be found on our
BREDL Fact Sheets page.

BREDL Partners
with TERC

TERC is partnering with environmental action groups in twelve states to advance the quantitative literacy skills needed to understand and solve pressing environmental problems.

More about this partnership


Social Connection

The League Line

BREDL's Winter 2019 newsletter available online

The LEAGUE LINE: Winter 2019
- Cover: Janet Marsh Zeller
Winter 2019
- BREDL Teams with Sioux in Groundbreaking Legal Challenge to FERC's Certification of the Mountain Valley Pipeline by Ann Rogers
- Roanoke Gas Expansion into Franklin County, VA by Mark Barker
- What does a huge document dump on the Atlantic Coast Pipeline tell us? That the Governor should have dumped the ACP by Therese Vick
- You Ain't Seen Nothing Yet by Sharon Ponton
- Why is Enviva’s Proposed Permit with “pollution controls” worse than the original? by Pastor Cary Rodgers

BREDL and Concerned Citizens of Richmond County Press Conference - On October 8, 2015 Blue Ridge Environmental Defense League and Concerned Citizens of Richmond County stood in front of the HQ of NCDENR in Raleigh, NC to announce that they have renewed their citizen's lawsuit against EPA and the state's permit for failure to properly regulate Duke Energy's Turbines in Hamlet, NC. The citizens of Richmond county are already being harmed with excessive amounts of air pollution from Duke's power plant.

Blue Ridge Environmental Defense League is a regional, community-based, non-profit environmental organization. Our founding principles are earth stewardship, environmental democracy, social justice, and community empowerment.

Blue Ridge Environmental Defense League Inc. is a registered 501(c)(3). EIN: 58-1624130