Environmental Groups to Host Panel About Gas Pipelines Tonight in Princeton

Several environmental groups have joined forces to host a panel about gas pipelines tonight at 7 at Princeton University.

The forum, “Pipeline Education and Empowerment: A Panel Discussion” will be held in McCosh 46. Speakers will talk about issues related to gas line projects, and options for individuals, groups and municipalities.

Panelists include: Kate Millsaps of the NJ Sierra Club, Faith Zerbe of the Delaware Riverkeeper Network, Jennifer Coffee of the StonyBrook Millstone Watershed Association, Alice Baker from the Eastern Environmental Law Clinic, and Frank and Nancy Rumore from Fight the Pipe.

A number of pipeline expansion projects are being constructed across the state. The latest expansion proposed by the Williams Co. as part of the Leidy Southeast Expansion Project, would affect Princeton, Montgomery, Branchburg, and Readington. 

Williams wants to expand its Transco natural gas line that runs through Montgomery and Princeton. The project would affect more than 30 properties along the Great Road in Princeton. The area is part if the environmentally sensitive Princeton Ridge. About 1.2 miles of pipeline would be built running parallel to the existing pipeline in Princeton and another five miles if pipeline would be expanded in Montgomery.

If the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission approves the project,  construction of the new portion of the gas line called the Skillman Loop could start in fall of 2014. The Transco pipeline spans 10,200 miles from South Texas to New York City.

Another Transco project, the proposed Stanton Loop, would run along about 90 homes in Hunterdon County, including several dozens properties in Clinton and others in Union, Franklin and Readington.

Princeton homeowners who attended a meeting with representatives from the Federal Regulatory Commission and Williams expressed concerns about the environmental impacts of the project.

The Williams Comppany will present plans for expanding the natural gas pipeline system on April 11 from 6 to 9 p.m. at the Otto Kaufman Community Center, which is located at 356 Skillman Road in Skillman.