Home / Energy / Feds to pipeline firm: Can stations be combined?

Feds to pipeline firm: Can stations be combined?

A federal regulator told the Tennessee Gas Company that it should explain why two compressor stations proposed for Schoharie County can’t be combined into a natural gas pumping station on just one site.

The Federal Energy Regulatory Commission official, in a letter to the company, noted that the two sites, both in the town of Schoharie, are just 10 miles apart.

The compressor stations would be part of the Tennessee Gas Co.’s $4 billion Northeast Energy Direct pipeline that would cross several counties in New York after entering the state from Pennsylvania. The 419-mile pipeline, after connecting with the compressor stations in Schoharie, would then head eastward into New England.

Tennessee Gas Company is a subsidiary of energy giant Kinder Morgan.

What the project planners are calling the Supply Path Tail Station and the Market Path Head Station compressors are both located in Schoharie.

FERC environmental projects manager Eric Tomasi advised J. Curtis Moffat, a Tennessee Gas deputy counsel involved with the project, that the federal agency wants a response to its concerns within 20 days.

“Explain why the facilities were not located within a single facility in order to minimize the land use impacts,” Tomasi wrote in the letter.

Related: Sanders aligns against proposed natural gas pipeline

“Provide information on the feasibility of combining the facility into one compressor station project,” Tomasi added.

The project planners have also lined up an option to purchase a tract of land in the town of Franklin, approximately 40 miles south of the Schoharie sites, for another compressor station. The Franklin project has aroused considerable opposition, although political candidates fighting the compressor project were defeated in Franklin town elections last month.

An “open house” on the Schoharie compressors will be held at 6 p.m. Tuesday, Dec. 15, at the Days Inn in Schoharie. Tennessee Gas has organized a similar event at 6 p.m. on Dec. 16 at Franklin Central School.

Meanwhile, the potential health impacts from natural gas transmission infrastructure such as compressor stations and pipelines will be discussed Wednesday at a press conference in Albany, with the chairman of the Schoharie County Board of Supervisors, Earl Van Wormer, slated to be one of the lead speakers.

Van Wormer said recently that officials from Rensselaer and Schoharie Counties will be joining him in urging Gov. Andrew Cuomo to direct the state Department of Health to oversee a comprehensive assessment of health impacts from pipelines and compressors.

The Medical Society of the State of New York, a physicians’ association, said earlier this year that chemical and radioactive emissions not only occur near well pads but also along pipelines.

The organization said the emissions include “dangerous mixtures” of carcinogens, mutagens, endocrine disruptors, neurotoxins, respiratory irritants and hematological and cardiovascular toxins.

This article was written by Joe Mahoney from The Daily Star, Oneonta, N.Y. and was legally licensed through the NewsCred publisher network.