Files legal action with feds to intervene in issue
BY TOM HESTER SR.
The state Department of Environmental Protection has filed a legal motion to intervene with the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission in the case of a natural gas pipeline expansion proposed by Spectra Energy that would run through Hudson and Union counties.
The proposed line would run from Linden through Bayonne and Jersey City to offshore Hoboken and under the Hudson river to Manhattan.
DEP officials note the line would pass through parks, wetlands, the Hudson Riverfront Walkway, and in close proximity to the entrance to the Liberty Science Center in Jersey City.
"We are intervening in the matter to protect the interests of Linden, Bayonne, Jersey City and the State of New Jersey,'' Gov. Chris Christie said. "The state has serious concerns with the pipeline proposal, and this action preserves our right to take an active role, to be involved in any decisions that are considered or made.''The DEP is charged with environmental oversight in the state, to protect both the public health and natural resources.
"As an intervener, the DEP will participate in the FERC proceeding and work to prevent any adverse impact on safety, transportation, the environment, economic development, homeland security and other key issues of importance to the state,'' DEP Commissioner Bob Martin said.
Jersey City Mayor Jeremiah T. Healy took the same action on Friday.
Spectra Energy has tried to meet concerns of officials and residents by altering the route of the proposed line.