A controversial natural gas pipeline proposed to cut across Southern New Hampshire has submitted its application to Federal Regulators.
Natural gas pipeline developer Kinder Morgan filed its application with the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission to build a 420 mile pipeline from Pennsylvania to Dracut, Massachusetts. The project would lay 30 inch diameter pipe over 70 miles through towns on New Hampshire's Southern border. If the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission were to grant it a certificate, the project would be granted the power of eminent domain, and would hope to begin construction in early 2017. Kinder Morgan says it hopes the project would be in service by November of 2019.
Developers moved the pipeline's route north through New Hampshire after intense pushback from residents and politicians in Massachusetts. While Granite Staters who live along the route have mounted an increasingly organized response, political opposition has thus far been muted. Business groups in the state are carrying out a vocal campaign putting a spotlight on the state's high energy prices.
Three public information sessions for the project are scheduled for the first week of December, and an application before state siting officials isn't expected until January. Project officials say the state review would happen concurrently with a federal review. The filing comes comes just a few days after a report from the Massachusetts Attorney General's office found the most cost effective way to reduce energy prices in New England would be to invest in energy efficiency and other technologies that would cut demand for energy overall. That same report, however, found the pipeline would save electric rate payers $133 million dollars a year.