In response to the letter from Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) instructing PennEast Pipeline Company, LLC FERC to provide more information for FERC to complete the environmental impact statement, local environmental groups agree that PennEast has failed to support its application.
PennEast’s application is construct 110 miles from Dallas Township, Luzerne County, Pennsylvania, under the Delaware River, into to Hopewell Township and connecting to an existing pipeline in Pennington, New Jersey. The information is necessary for FERC to prepare its environmental impact statement (EIS), which part of the approval process for the pipeline.
On behalf of Friends of Hopewell Valley Open Space (FoHVOS), Executive Director Patricia Sziber, stated, “FERC has asked PennEast to provide details regarding mitigation and minimization of potential impacts of construction and operation of their pipeline to visitors to preserved lands, including the Ted Stiles Preserve at Baldpate Mountain. FERC needs this information to include in its environmental impact statement (EIS). Good! It’s high time they pushed for some accountability from PennEast.
FoHVOS is very concerned about the prospect of having this pipeline slashing across preserved land, in particular the Ted Stiles Preserve. We worked very hard for nine years to preserve Baldpate’s exceptional ecological value and provide the opportunity for people to enjoy an outstanding outdoor experience, whether they are hikers, birders, photographers or families just seeking a quiet walk on Mercer County’s finest natural gem. The proposed route of the pipeline would result in the removal of trees that are critical to the habitat for bird species of concern and would run within view of the Ridge Trail. Not only that, it also would cross the Pleasant Valley Road parking area. This is not what the preservation partners had in mind when they committed $11.5 million of taxpayer money to preserve the 1,200 acres in 1998. So, ok PennEast, tell us how you’re going hide that pipeline.”
Jeff Tittel, Director of the New Jersey Sierra Club, offered, “PennEast has failed to file the required information to FERC. PennEast has not complied with FERC’s order and they have not given enough information to the agency. Their application is still incomplete and they should not be allowed to go forward. Without this information, FERC cannot prepare an EIS Statement for the PennEast Pipeline. That is why FERC should suspend its review on PennEast’s application. The PennEast pipeline will have devastating environmental impacts, cutting a scar through environmentally sensitive land and open spaces. This pipeline will not only promote fracking, add to air pollution, but it is a safety threat to the Delaware Valley and our homes. We don’t believe that this project, given all its problems and failure to do proper surveys, that FERC can do a proper EIS.”
Tom Gilbert, Campaign Director, ReThink Energy NJ and New Jersey Conservation Foundation, offered, “Clearly, the facts all point to the proposed PennEast pipeline as a project that is considerably behind schedule and fraught with uncertainty,” Gilbert said. “It is also a risky investment as the nation and world move to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and transition to renewable sources of energy.”
Michael Pisarro, Policy Director at the Stony Brook-Millstone Watershed Association shared with MercerMe, “FERC’s letter demonstrates once again that the information that PennEast has submitted to date is incomplete and inaccurate. FERC and the public have requested complete and accurate information from PennEast on numerous occasions to no avail. The Watershed and others have called upon FERC to suspend its review on this project until PennEast supplies complete and accurate information.”