The Federal Energy Regulatory Commission has opened a new 30-day public comment period for the proposed PennEast pipeline. The new comment period has been instituted because PennEast changed the proposed route for the pipeline.
PennEast submitted 33 minor alternatives to the proposed route. The proposed 110-mile PennEast pipeline would cut through the Delaware River Valley beginning in Dallas Township in Luzerne County, Pa. It would cross the Delaware River and 254 other major waterways, cut through Hopewell Township, and connect to an existing pipeline in Pennington.
“FERC has reopened the docket is because of the public outpouring after PennEast changed the route,” said Jeff Tittel, executive director of the New Jersey Sierra Club. “When PennEast changed the route, they ambushed many people who suddenly found out they have a pipeline planned to go through their property. It was shameful for PennEast to do this without giving those people a right to comment. Now they have a chance to get their voices on the record.”
Tittel said the new public comment period is a small victory for pipeline opponents.
“We will continue to fight against the PennEast Pipeline because all they are doing by changing parts of the proposed route is rearranging the deck chairs on the Titanic,” he said. “This project is still a disaster because of the overall damage it will do to the environment and public safety.”
The Sierra Clubb contends that the PennEast Pipeline violates the Clean Water Act and cannot meet the criteria for water quality permits from the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection because of the impact it will have on streams.
“Even with making minimal changes, this project will still will be an environmental nightmare,” he said. “The pipeline will destroy the Delaware Valley and change the landscape forever.”