Mariner East Invokes Eminent Domain Against 2 SWPA Landowners

Another “nobody wins” eminent domain lawsuit has been filed by a pipeline company. This time it’s Sunoco Logistics filing for their Mariner East pipeline against two different families/landowners in Washington County, PA. The landowners don’t want the pipeline but Sunoco insists it’s necessary to have those specific properties. The problem is, will an eminent domain claim hold up in court? Last July, two independent administrative law judges working for the PA Public Utility Commission (PUC) ruled that Mariner East is not, according to the definition, a “public utility” (see Setback for Mariner East NGL Pipe – Judges Say Not Public Utility). But then in October, the full board of Commissioners for the PUC voted to send the case back to those judges with instructions to “reconsider” their decision (see Major Milestone: PA PUC Rules Mariner East IS a Public Utility). Sunoco has a lot riding on whether or not their claim to be a public utility will hold up in court. If Mariner East is not a public utility, they have no claim to eminent domain powers…

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