Williams Northeast Supply Enhancement Pipeline Advances in PA

In March of this year, Williams filed a full, official application for the Northeast Supply Enhancement project (see Williams Files with FERC to Expand Transco Pipeline to NYC, NE). The new project is meant to increase pipeline capacity and flows heading into northeastern markets. In particular, Transco wants to provide more Marcellus natural gas to utility giant National Grid beginning with the 2019-2020 heating season. National Grid operates in New York City, Rhode Island and Massachusetts. There are a number of components to the project, but the key component, the heart of the project, is a new 23-mile pipeline from the shore of New Jersey into (on the bottom of) the Raritan Bay–running parallel to the existing Transco pipeline–before connecting to the Transco offshore. Much of the Raritan Bay pipeline is located in New York territorial waters. In a case of “here we go again,” the New York Dept. of Environmental Conservation (DEC), which has been corrupted and politicized by Gov. Andrew Cuomo, sent a notice to Williams in July (to their Transco subsidiary) to declare the application for a 401 water-crossing permit for the Northeast Supply Enhancement project is deemed “incomplete,” pending certain items (see NY DEC Tells Williams NE Supply Water Permit App is “Incomplete”). However, NY isn’t the only state involved. The project wants to build 10 miles of pipeline, build four roads and build a new compressor station (next to an existing compressor) in Pennsylvania. Even though the PA Dept. of Environmental Protection (DEP) has been slow in issuing permits for drilling (see today’s story More Pushback on PA Senate Plan to Fix Slow DEP Permit Reviews), the DEP is far less dysfunctional than the NY DEC. The last Saturday the DEP published a notice in the Pennsylvania Bulletin that the agency will issue the necessary permits for the project in PA after a public comment period that ends on Sept. 18…

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