Spectra already lost at FERC once; could also lose at NRC

FERC previously denied a Spectra pipeline, and now the Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) may prevent one. After three months of asking, John Peconom of FERC divulged how many pipelines FERC had ever denied: two, of which one was for a pipeline from an LNG site in Providence, Rhode Island, proposed by KeySpan LNG, L.P. and Algonquin Gas Transmission LLC, and denied by FERC 5 July 2005. According to Spectra Energy:

Algonquin Gas Transmission
  • Location: New England, New York and New Jersey
  • Length: 1,129 miles
  • Capacity: 2.74 billion cubic feet per day (Bcf/d)
  • Ownership Interest: 100 percent Spectra Energy Partners, LP
  • Operator: Spectra Energy

Here’s why FERC denied Spectra’s attempt to turn an LNG storage site into an LNG import terminal with pipeline:

  1. This order finds that authorization of KeySpan’s LNG import terminal facilities, as proposed, would be inconsistent with the public interest. Although the proposed facilities would provide a new source of reliable LNG imports in New England, are fully subscribed and, if constructed in an appropriate manner, would not constitute a major federal action significantly affecting the quality of the human environment, we find that it is not consistent with the public interest under section 3 to authorize KeySpan to site, construct, and operate a new LNG import terminal that does not comply fully with the DOT’s current safety standards. As a consequence, we will also dismiss Algonquin’s application.

Catch that? FERC denied Spectra’s 2005 pipeline because of safety.

How’s this for safety? Spectra now wants to run its Algonquin Incremental Market (AIM) pipeline right past Entergy’s Indian Point nuclear plant, which is already famous for catching fire and leaking oil into the Hudson River after a supervisor was arrested for falsifying records, and it’s built on a fault line. Even the famously complacent NRC is holding an emergency hearing about this July 15th.

So Spectra already lost at FERC, and could lose again (on any or all of its pipelines). And Spectra could lose at the NRC.

Back then the boondoggle was LNG import. Now, because of fracking, it’s LNG export. Eminent domain for private companies to gouge destructive and hazardous pipelines through private property and watersheds is still a bad idea.

Is a company that wants to AIM a pipeline past a failing nuke the kind of company anyone wants gouging the Sabal Trail fracked methane pipeline through the fragile Floridan Aquifer in Georgia and Florida?


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