Constitution Committed to Building Federally Approved Pipeline, Delivering Energy Savings and Environmental Benefits to Northeast U.S.

Despite the New York Department of Environmental Conservation’s unprecedented decision on April 22, 2016, Constitution Pipeline’s sponsors remain absolutely committed to building this important energy infrastructure project, which will create an important connection between consumers and reliable supplies of clean, affordable natural gas. [Read our full statement]

What others are saying:

  • Wall Street Journal: “Behold Mr. Cuomo’s economic growth strategy: Destroy private high-paying energy and manufacturing jobs. Then create government programs that soak state taxpayers to compensate the victims and subsidize his politically favored industries.” (Editorial, 4/27/16)
  • NY Assemblyman Clifford Crouch: “By denying this project, the governor is effectively admitting that New York is the worst state in the nation in which to do business and is the least friendly to business enterprises. I am extremely concerned about the future of the jobs at Amphenol and Acco Brands in Sidney.” (News Release, 4/22/16)
  • U.S. Congressman John Katko: I was disappointed to learn that the Constitution pipeline was rejected.  Policy makers at every level of government need to look at all opportunities to lower energy costs and create well-paying jobs.  I am afraid we missed an opportunity to accomplish both of these objectives.” (News Release, 4/28/16)
  • Sidney Mayor Andy Matviak: “I’m very disappointed. It would have been a boost for us economically. Norwich, Oneonta and Walton all have gas. This would have helped our village residents, it would have helped Amphenol and it would have helped our schools.” (Daily Star, 4/25/16)
  • Leatherstocking Gas Co. President Michael German: “The only viable gas supply that we see right now is Constitution.” (Press & Sun Bulletin, 4/25/16)
  • API Executive Director Marty Durbin: “This decision will cost the state thousands of jobs and is an assault on families and businesses.” (Times Union, 4/25/16)
  • Heather Briccetti, president of The Business Council of New York State: “We are incredibly disappointed that the administration allowed fear-mongering to once again lead the way. The decision will have a direct and immediate negative impact on our state’s economy.” (Associated Press, 4/22/16)
  • North America’s Building Trades Union: “The rejection of the Constitution Pipeline is just another example of a regulatory system that fails to balance and protect all public interests, including and especially those of American workers and energy consumers.” (Media Statement, 4/25/16)
  • Laborers’ International Union of North America: “Instead of considering what is in the best interest of the people of the great state of New York, the decision by the NYSDEC undermines the economy, progress on clean power, and access to affordable energy.” (Media Statement, 4/26/16)
  • The Empire Center for Public Policy: “Cuomo is fully on board with those environmentalists who seek to block any project involving any use or expanded access to fossil fuels of any kind, at any time, in any place in New York State.” (NY Torch, 4/22/16)

Fueling a Renewable Future

Thanks to natural gas, the United States has reduced its carbon emissions more than virtually any other nation in the world, including Europe. And thanks to its affordability, natural gas has become the fuel of choice for businesses, manufacturers and consumers. What isn’t as well known is that natural gas compliments low-carbon energy solutions by providing the flexibility needed to support a growing renewables component in power generation. [Learn more]

“Natural gas and renewables complement each other very nicely … I think it’s important to recognize that these industries, although we do compete, are working together to address some of the most pressing energy needs in the country.” — (Rhone Resch, CEO of the Solar Energy Industries Association, January 2013)

Clean-burning natural gas currently produces one-third of all electric generation and heats about half of all U.S. homes – and those numbers continue to climb.

Project Description

Williams, a leading energy infrastructure company, has partnered with Cabot Oil & Gas, Piedmont Natural Gas, and WGL  Holdings to develop a major transmission pipeline project to connect abundant Appalachian natural gas supplies in northern Pennsylvania with major northeastern markets.

The approximately 124-mile Constitution Pipeline has been designed with a capacity to transport 650,000 dekatherms of natural gas per day (enough natural gas to serve approximately 3 million homes). Buried underground, the 30-inch pipeline will extend from Susquehanna County, Pa., to the Iroquois Gas Transmission and Tennessee Gas Pipeline systems in Schoharie County, N.Y. The pipeline route stretches from Susquehanna County, Pa., into Broome County, N.Y., Chenango County, N.Y., Delaware County, N.Y., and terminates in Schoharie County, N.Y.

Project Benefits & Labor Union Support 

This vital energy infrastructure project will provide over 1,300 desperately needed local construction jobs while helping support nearly 1,000 indirect jobs in these counties. This project is expected to create nearly $130 million dollars of new local payroll in areas of the state that need it the most.

[Press release from Laborers’ International Union of North America (LiUNA)]

Learn why New Yorkers can’t wait for the Constitution Pipeline:

Economic Impact Study

Constitution Pipeline Company worked with the Center for Governmental Research to develop a formal economic analysis of the potential economic benefits generated by the project. That formal study, which was completed in January 2013 and updated in July 2013, indicates the economic impact during the construction phase would result in $130 million in new labor income in the region, approximately $26 million going to residents of the region.

During the construction phase, it is estimated that the workforce will be comprised of five teams of 260 workers totaling up to 1,300 new construction jobs. It’s estimated that 2,400 direct and indirect jobs will be created during the construction phase, with about 50 percent of the construction workforce coming from in-state labor. At this time, it is anticipated that approximately 25 percent of the construction workforce will be hired locally (i.e., within the 5-county project area).

The project is expected to generate $17 million in new sales and income tax revenue. Constitution Pipeline projects to spend about $683 million during the initial three year planning and building process, approximately $166 million of which would directly benefit the five county region. Once operational,  the pipeline’s economic impact is anticipated to result in $13 million in new annual sales, income and property tax revenue and more than $600,000 in new income in the region. To view the complete study, click here.

Projected Annual Property Tax Benefit:

  • Broome County – $2.1 million
  • Chenago County – $1.3 million
  • Delaware County – $4.9 million
  • Schoharie County – $4.4 million

Local Natural Gas Service

Constitution Pipeline would be considered an “open access pipeline,” meaning that local municipalities or public utilities could potentially tap the line in the future to provide residential, commercial and industrial natural gas service.

One such provider Constitution is working with is Leatherstocking Gas Company, LLC. In March 2014 Constitution Pipeline and Leatherstocking announced an agreement to install four delivery interconnects along Constitution’s proposed pipeline route for the purpose of facilitating potential local natural gas service. Leatherstocking’s plan is to develop local natural gas distribution systems within Broome, Chenango, Delaware, and Madison Counties in New York State and Susquehanna County in Pennsylvania in locations currently without natural gas service.

 

Permitting Process

The FERC  issued its Final Environmental Impact Statement on the project on Oct. 24, 2014, concluding that environmental impacts would be reduced to “less than significant levels” with the implementation of proposed mitigation measures by the company and FERC.

On Dec. 2, 2014, the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission issued an Order granting a Certificate of Public Convenience and Necessity for the Constitution Pipeline project (docket number CP13-499). To view the Order, click here. FERC issued this document to signify that approval has been granted to build and operate the pipeline. The certificate details the conditions of the approval, including the final route FERC has authorized, and construction and mitigation measures that must be followed.

On April 22, 2016, the New York Department of Environmental Conservation (NYSDEC) denied Constitution Pipeline’s Section 401 Water Quality Certification. The company is currently assessing its options to best advance the project, which could include appealing NYSDEC’s decision to the U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals.

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