PennEast formally submitted their application to the federal government for a Certificate of Public Convenience and Necessity last Friday. This is a major change in the project status and impacts everyone who is opposed to the pipeline.
We will be discussing the changes at a meeting at the municipal building this Wednesday, September 30th at 7:00pm.
Please make every effort to attend. There is a limited 3 week window to declare yourself as an Intervenor in the FERC process, and you will lose certain rights if you fail to do so.
We will be doing live demos on how to declare yourself as an intervenor on the project, and will be assisting people in registering with FERC and filing their own declarations as well. Bring your laptop along if you want us to help you with your intervention declaration! If you don’t have a computer or know people who don’t, we can get them registered and filed using our equipment.
If you absolutely cannot make the meeting but wish to learn how to declare as an intervenor, please email us at firstname.lastname@example.org and we will be in touch to assist you.
Note that this does NOT in any way make this project a done deal, but it does move its status from an informally proposed project to a more formal federal regulatory process.
Here’s what’s changed, and what hasn’t:
- The route is more-or-less fixed at this time and is essentially the same as what was published in July 2015. However, we now have the full proposed construction details and can relate this to impacted landowners and the township committee.
- The docket within the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) has changed from the pre-filing docket PF15-1-000, to the formal application docket CP15-558-000. Activity on PF15-1-000 will cease. Any comments and documents you wish to file with FERC must be published to CP15-558-000 from now on.
- Several regulatory clocks are now triggered. Most notably, a 3 week window is now open during which people can declare themselves as intervenors. Intervenors get notified of all correspondence related to the pipeline, and reserve the right to be involved in any potential legal proceedings or hearings. There is no negative impact to intervening, other than an increase in email related to the pipeline. Anyone who feels impacted by the pipeline in any way may declare themselves as an intervenor – it is not just for landowners. We are urging all West Amwell Residents and residents of surrounding towns to register as intervenors and retain their rights.
- FERC will evaluate the application over the next 12-18+ months. After that PennEast may choose to withdraw their application, FERC can reject it, or FERC can accept it. After that a series of other state and local permits must be obtained, and legal actions may possibly be undertaken.
- PennEast has no approvals and has no additional rights. They still cannot survey without landowner permission, they do not have eminent domain authority, and can’t do any construction.
You can view the full application, resource reports, and appendices at the link below.
There is an enormous amount of material here and we will be reading and analyzing it over the coming weeks and months.