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Sierra Club Opposes Transco Pipeline in Federal Filing
Date : Mon, 01 Jul 2013 11:42:34 -0400
/LINK TO COMMENTS:
July 1, 2013
Contact: Jeff Tittel, NJ Sierra Club Director, 609-558-9100
Sierra Club Opposes Transco Pipeline in Federal Filing
Today the Sierra Club and 33 environmental, community, and faith
organizations submitted comments to the Federal Energy Regulatory
Commission (FERC) calling on the federal agency to deny a proposed gas
pipeline expansion.Transcontinental Gas Pipeline Company's (Transco)
Leidy Southeast Expansion Project would cut through environmentally
sensitive areas, important streams and forests, and critical habitat to
carry gas produced through the dangerous technique of hydraulic
fracturing, or fracking.There is no need for this pipeline.The purpose
is to promote
"There is no need for this pipeline.The purpose is to promote fracking
and the burning of fossil fuels that impact clean water and promote
climate change. This pipeline is going to go through environmentally
sensitive areas creating an ugly scar, adding to pollution, and putting
people at risk. Just ask the people of Bellingham Washington,
Burlingame, California and Edison, NJ. This line not only threatens the
neighborhoods it passes through but threatens our environment.
Pennsylvania gets the money, New York gets the gas, and we get the
pipe," said Jeff Tittel, Director, NJ Sierra Club.
The comments were submitted as part of the scoping process in the
preparation of an Environmental Assessment for the project under the
National Environmental Policy Act.The groups outlined the numerous
resources that would be negatively affected by the project from the
Princeton Ridge to local air quality to climate change impacts and
requested a more through environmental study, an Environmental Impact
Statement, be prepared.Transco has yet to file all required
environmental reports and groups urged FERC to extend the comment
period, which closes today, until 30 days after all those reports are
submitted for public review and comment.So far Transco has filed 2 of 13
Resource Reports and has stated they plan to submit the rest of the
draft reports in late July.
"Until the public has access to the all the environmental documents,
comments provided will be broad and best estimations.We have comment
period first, access to project information later.We urge FERC to extend
the comment period and hold a second round of scoping hearings after the
environmental resource reports are submitted so that concerned citizens
can submit specific comments that are informed by a better understanding
of the project and its impacts," said Kate Millsaps, Conservation
Program Coordinator, Sierra Club.
The groups also urged FERC to include the environmental impacts
resulting from fracking as a cumulative impact of the project as the
pipeline is being built to serve Marcellus Shale gas fields.The project
will provide expanded capacity, allowing more drilling to move forward
in the region and the consequences of that expansion should be examined
as part of the review.
The scoping process is the first step in the preparation of an
Environmental Assessment (EA) under the National Environmental Policy
Act.During this time, all parties interested in the project --municipal
bodies, environmental and community groups, land owners, concerned
citizens- must submit their concerns on the public record.FERC will only
look into issues raised during this portion of the review process in the
environmental document.The scoping is especially important because
citizens and groups cannot challenge the project in court after approval
on the grounds of something not raised in the scoping process.This makes
public input and access to the Resource Reports especially important.
Following the scoping hearings FERC will prepare a Draft EA which will
either conclude there is a Finding of No Significant Impact (FONSI) or
that more review is needed under an Environmental Impact Statement
"A full Environmental Impact Statement is needed on this project due to
the significant impacts the pipeline expansion will have on potential
threatened and endangered species habitat, loss of forest cover and
wetlands, threats to our public open spaces, intensifying and expanding
the use of fracking in the Marcellus Shale and intensifying climate
change," said Kate Millsaps.
Transco is in the pre-filing process and has not yet filed a formal
application with FERC.The New Jersey Sierra Club is now exploring
options to intervene in the proceedings before FERC.By intervening,
individuals and groups can challenge the FERC approval and are
considering next steps now.Groups, municipalities, and citizens cannot
intervene until a formal application is filed.
The Leidy Southeast Expansion project would install over 12 miles of 42
inch pipeline in New Jersey.The Skillman Loop would run 6.36 miles
through Princeton and Montgomery Townships. The Pleasant Run Loop would
run 6.85 miles in Branchburg, Readington, and Clinton Townships.The
Pennsylvania portions of the project are in Luzerne and Monroe counties.
Princeton Township, Readington Township, and Montgomery Township
Municipal Councils have passed resolutions expressing concerns over the
impacts of the project and requesting more information.
Transco is currently constructing 28 miles of new pipeline in New Jersey
and Pennsylvania as part of the Northeast Supply Link project.That
project also involves expanding the capacity of an existing pipeline in
"How many gas pipeline expansion project do we need across the state as
the gas drillers are announcing they are decreasing production”These
projects are all speculative and driven by the supply-side.They are not
based on actual demand; if they were, they would not be built," said
On 712013, the following Filing was submitted to the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC), Washington D.C.:
Filer: Sierra Club- New Jersey Chapter
Filing Type: Comment on Filing
Description: Comment of Sierra Club- New Jersey Chapter, Food and Water Watch, Delaware Riverkeeper Network, Stony Brook-Millstone Watershed Association, Raritan Headwaters Association
and the undersigned organizations under PF13-5-000.
To view the document for this Filing, click here
To modify your subscriptions, click here:https://ferconline.ferc.gov/eSubscription.aspx
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