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Spectra causes uproar over pipeline expansion project

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World Pipelines,

Recently, new natural gas pipeline projects are being proposed across the US, particularly in the state of Connecticut and the region of New England. These proposals are sparking debates regarding the issues of environmental damages, energy costs, climate changes and fossil fuels.

Greg Cunningham, Vice President of the Conservation Law Foundation in Massachusetts, stated: "It's a huge cost financially. This is also increasing our reliance on another fossil fuel at a time when New England and the rest of the US should be concentrating on renewable energy.”

Spectra’s AIM

One proposal causing debate with environmental activists is Spectra Energy’s Algonquin Incremental Market (AIM) project. The project is set to expand the capacity of its existing Algonquin Gas Transmission pipeline network in New York, which will transport the flow of natural gas from Pennsylvania to New England.

Spectra’s AIM project was approved in March 2015 by the FERC, and by October, 30 000 opposed individuals has signed a petition to shutdown the project and to perform an independent risk assessment of the pipeline.

Nature vs natural gas

Similarly, numerous residents in Cortlandt Manor (New York) are in an uproar over the construction of the pipeline, as it has resulted in the clearing of trees.

Workers began their construction by chopping down dozens of trees; the residents of the area said that approximately 30 trees were on a specific piece of land, which the natural gas pipeline will never run through.

Benefits not worth the cost

Additionally, the town council members of Rocky Hill (Connecticut) have collectively denied the request to lease a section of its Old Forge Road industrial park to act as an infusion station, to the pipeline. The proposition would have seen truckloads of compressed natural gas arriving, which would be discharged into the Algonquin pipeline system.

The council members overall decided that the benefits were not worth the cost to the environment and the state. Democratic Mayor, Claudia Baio, stated: “In weighing the pros and cons, the negatives outweighed the positives. It came down to a quality of life. It's always difficult to turn down dollars.”

Edited from various sources by Stephanie Roker

Sources: Hartford Courant, Lohud, Westchester News12 

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