The PennEast Pipeline is a proposed gas transmission project of six companies: UGI Utilities, AGL Resources, NJR Pipeline Company, Public Service Enterprise Group, South Jersey Industries, and Spectra Energy. Ratepayers would pay for the construction of the project, the partners would benefit from the gas transported though the pipeline, and the landowners would be the ones who loose. Twenty-six townships in Pennsylvania and New Jersey have passed resolutions opposing the PennEast Pipeline. Residents and elected officials at all levels of government, including school districts, counties and conservation groups, have overwhelmingly called for the six companies financing the PennEast pipeline to drop the project.
This pipeline, if approved by FERC, would cut a 125-foot, swath of permanent devastation for 114 miles, starting in Luzerne County PA and ending in Mercer County NJ. The effects of this pipeline would be devastating environmentally. The 36 inch, 1480 psi pipeline, targets tax payer paid for open space and preserved farmland because its cheaper and easier to build. New rights of way also create a new “pipeline super highway” for future pipelines and the pumping and compressor stations that can accompany them.
The proposed route would cross 88 waterways, many which are federally regulated C-1 blue line streams. Along with the risk to the Wild and Scenic Delaware, the project is proposed to cross 44 wetlands and 30 parks. 85% is proposed to cross through the Delaware watershed. The proposed route threatens other lands containing a multitude of environmentally sensitive attributes and features, including forests, surface and groundwater recharge watersheds, wetlands, habitat of rare, threatened and endangered species, steep slopes, and productive agricultural soils.
Townships along the proposed route regularly host cultural and art events that attract tourism from all over the tri-state area that reflect the history and cultural aspects of the region. The Delaware Valley Region area also offers a splendid opportunity for horseback riding, fishing, picnicking, hunting, cross-country skiing, photography, bird watching…or just a lovely, restful place to get away.
PennEast has proposed alternate co-located routes in both PA and NJ. This would mean that the pipeline would be located on existing right of way (ROW) already developed for the power grid. If existing electrical ROW is used for the pipeline route, pipelines can not be sited underneath electrical lines, thus the ROW must be widened an extra 100′ or more. In some townships, the ROWs would be expanded to 450 feet.
The project would also impact significant cultural, historic and archaeological resources, causing significant and irremediable damaging effects on valuable and irreplaceable resources.
The devastation would be irreversible and forever harm an area that is celebrated for it’s environmentally sensitive land that supplies water to millions of people, has a flourishing agriculture community, and small towns relying on outdoor tourism.