PennEast halts plan to hunt NJ public lands for pipeline

  • Zoë Learn/WHYY

A controversial plan to make use of New Jersey State lands for a pure fuel pipeline is lifeless — for now.

The choice to halt the plan was a part of an settlement with the New Jersey Lawyer Common’s workplace, which argued in opposition to the PennEast Pipeline Firm’s use of public lands earlier than the U.S. Supreme Courtroom. 

The brand new settlement means PennEast gained’t take the lands to construct the pipeline, though the Supreme Courtroom dominated it might use eminent area to accumulate the state land for the undertaking. New Jersey had argued the eleventh Modification, which grants states immunity from non-public lawsuits, prevented PennEast from condemning the 42 parcels both owned by New Jersey immediately or held as conservation easements.

Leland Moore, a spokesman for the AG’s workplace, advised NJ Highlight Information in a press release, “We’re happy that after three years of litigation, PennEast has lastly paused on making an attempt to take state land. Though the corporate remains to be pushing forward with plans to construct an pointless and ill-conceived pipeline, we are going to proceed to guide the struggle in opposition to it, and we’re assured that we are going to finally prevail in courtroom.”

The pipeline has twice been denied state environmental permits and confronted fierce opposition from communities the place it will be constructed.

A PennEast spokesperson advised NJ Highlight Information it agreed to pause the acquisition due to uncertainty round when authorized and regulatory hurdles could be resolved.

If constructed, the pipeline would pump pure fuel about 120 miles from the Marcellus Shale in northeastern Pennsylvania, underneath the Delaware River by Hunterdon County, to a terminal in Mercer County. 

The AG’s workplace despatched a discover Sept. 20 to the Third Circuit Courtroom of Appeals that mentioned, “The events to those consolidated issues have agreed in precept to a stipulated voluntary dismissal of those issues.”

The Supreme Courtroom ruling reversed a 2019 determination by the Third Circuit courtroom that held New Jersey might block development on state-controlled conservation land. PennEast Pipeline board chair Anthony Cox mentioned the choice upheld seven many years of authorized precedent and “protects customers who depend on infrastructure tasks — discovered to be within the public profit after thorough scientific and environmental critiques — from being denied entry to much-needed vitality by slim State political pursuits.”

However opponents mentioned the choice trampled on states’ rights and goes in opposition to the state’s and the nation’s local weather targets by locking in one other fossil gas infrastructure undertaking that may encourage extra fracking for pure fuel in Pennsylvania.


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