Somerset County Opposes Tennessee Gas Compressor Station
Last night Somerset County passed a resolution (see attached) that opposes the West Milford and Wantage Compressor Station that Tennessee Gas Pipeline Company plans to build. Tennessee Gas Pipeline Company’s proposal includes modification and expansion of the Wantage Compressor Station in Sussex County, New Jersey, including installation of one Solar Titan 130 turbine with an ISO rating of 20,500 hp and auxiliary facilities. This is part of TGP’s East 300 Upgrade that also includes a new compressor station in the Highlands Region of West Milford.
“Somerset County has stood up for our health and environment by opposing TGP’s fossil fuel compressor stations. They are the first county and government entity that has passed a resolution to oppose these fossil fuel projects. The compressor stations increase GHG’s, climate impacts, and will have damaging impacts to our air and water. In their resolution, Somerset County raised the fact that the TGP Compressor stations go directly against Governor Murphy’s EO 100 to reduce GHG’s and move to 100% clean energy by 2050. One site for the compressor is in the middle of the Highlands Preserve right next to a C1 stream and above the Wanaque and Monksville reservoir. A leak or accident will be detrimental to the critical drinking water and to nearby communities,” said Jeff Tittel, Director of the New Jersey Sierra Club. “We thank Somerset County for protecting the Highlands and the drinking water for almost 3 million people.
On June 20th, Tennessee Gas Pipeline Company L.L.C filed with the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission seeking the issuance of a certificate of public convenience and necessity to construct, install, modify, operate, and maintain certain compression facilities located in New Jersey and Pennsylvania.
“Somerset County has been an instrumental leader when it comes to protecting the environment. They opposed the Northeast Supply Enhancement Project because the councilmembers knew the detrimental impacts it would have to our health and environment. Now they are standing up once again against TGP. Somerset County has sided with our clean air and our health over polluters,” said Tittel. “These compressor facilities release harmful air pollutants such as NOx, PM2.5, Sox, VOCs, HAPs such as formaldehyde, benzene, and GHG’s. Benzene can cause headaches, asthma attacks, and worsen symptoms for people with respiratory problems. Chromium, benzene and hydrocarbons can get into industrial stormwater runoff that will increase pollution and flooding.”
The New Jersey Sierra Club, Skylands Sierra Club, Sustainable West Milford, North Jersey Pipeline Walkers, Food & Water Watch, held a town hall against the 2 compressor stations with close to 200 people, including government officials from West Milford.
“The NJ Sierra Club and many other residents and environmental groups have been fighting this disastrous project for years. This company has a proven track record of causing destruction. They caused serious problems at Lake Lookover and Bearfort Waters. Mudslides, erosion and more covered the two lakes with mud and impacted drinking wells. We thank Somerset for being the first to oppose this disastrous project. However, it is critical for other areas like West Milford, Wantage, Sparta, and Mahwah to say no to this fossil fuel company that will only impact our land, air, and water for energy that will go to New York, not New Jersey. Our coalition against this project is growing. We will fight and continue to fight this unneeded project every step of the way,” said Jeff Tittel, Director of the New Jersey Sierra Club. “Now we call on Governor Murphy to reject TGP’s permits, especially since the facilities will increase GHG’s and impact our water supply and reservoirs.”