PennEast Pipe Files Water Permit Request with USACE, Antis Erupt

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Last week PennEast Pipeline, a $1 billion, 118-mile pipeline from Luzerne County, PA to Mercer County, NJ, filed a request with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers for water crossing permits (full copy below). PennEast has faced a series of legal challenges–in particular from virulent Big Green groups THE Delaware Riverkeeper (Maya van Rossum) and the New Jersey Sierra Club (Jeff Tittel). Somehow Big Green groups seem to have been able to exert undue influence over the New Jersey Dept. of Environmental Protection, which rejected granting water permits in June (see NJ DEP Rejects Water Permit for PennEast Pipeline – What’s Next?). However, PennEast continues to make progress. In April the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) issued a favorable, final environmental impact statement for the project, which is typically a prelude to issuing a final go-ahead (see FERC Issues Favorable Final EIS for PennEast Pipeline Project). Earlier this year, in February, the Pennsylvania Dept. of Environmental Protection issued a water permit for the project, which is being challenged in court by Big Green groups (see PennEast Pipeline Gets 401 Water Quality Certificate from PA DEP). PennEast acknowledges the Army Corps will still need information from other government agencies before it grants a water permit–but that’s OK. PennEast is simply getting its ducks in row by filing now, which has antis like van Rossum and Tittel in a dither…

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