Controversial Natural Gas Pipeline Gets Federal Approval to Start Pumping
By Mathew Katz on October 21, 2013 6:51am | Updated on October 21, 2013 6:51am
CHELSEA — A pipeline under the West Village and Chelsea has won federal government approval to start pumping natural gas, prompting an outcry from residents and opponents who fear the project could cause an explosion and environmental contamination.
The Federal Energy Regulatory Commission granted permission Thursday for the pipeline, built by Texas-based Spectra Energy, to be put into service on Nov. 1, according to a letter from commission director Lauren O’Donnell.
The companies behind the pipeline have “adequately stabilized areas disturbed by construction” and “restoration is proceeding satisfactorily,” O’Donnell wrote.
However, residents have raised safety concerns about the pipeline, which will pump about 800 million cubic feet of Marcellus Shale natural gas into the city each day. The pipeline stretches from New Jersey under the Hudson River and enters Manhattan at 10th Avenue and Gansevoort Street, stretching up to 15th Street.