In response to the May 2 letter to the editor, I would like to clarify that the NESE project application review process is not limited to 30 days, as the author suggests. FERC will accept and consider comments from the public at any time during the regulatory review process, which is anticipated to last 8-10 months. For a better understanding of the regulatory process and opportunities for public comment, click here.
It is also important to understand that it is normal for data contained in the FERC application to be supplemented with additional data as it becomes available. In such cases, the application will clearly delineate when additional data is expected to be submitted in the form of supplemental filings to the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC). While the author is quick to characterize this as ‘missing data,’ it is actually a normal part of the permitting process.
The FERC review process is extremely robust and is designed with transparency as its cornerstone. All information provided to the FERC by the applicant is part of the public record and available for public inspection. The only information that is not viewable by the general public is data designated as critical energy infrastructure information (CEII) or privileged. CEII contains specific engineering, vulnerability, or detailed design information about proposed or existing critical infrastructure, which is protected in the interest of homeland security. Privileged material includes sensitive information such as landowner details and specific locations of cultural resources.
While our FERC application includes detailed facility descriptions, we have also developed detailed artistic renderings of the facility to scale so that interested stakeholders can accurately visualize the completed facility. These renderings were provided by the company to NJTV for the referenced news article. They can be viewed on our website by clicking here. We are also in the process of developing an informative video which will even further help stakeholders visualize the completed project. It will be hosted on our website sometime this summer.
The author is correct in noting that the facility is designed to utilize 8.92 acres within the 52-acre tract. The NJTV story incorrectly referenced data developed prior to the finalized facility design (“about six acres”). This reference has since been corrected.
Our Transco pipeline has been safely operating in Franklin Township for decades. In fact, we provide more than half of the natural gas consumed in the State of New Jersey, and about half of the gas consumed in New York City. This project has been designed to increase Transco pipeline deliveries to National Grid -- the largest distributor of natural gas in the northeastern U.S.
Most people probably aren’t aware that our Transco pipeline already safely operates in this area. Our goal is to design this facility in a manner that it remains just as concealed.
We certainly understand the concerns that have been expressed. Our goal remains to demonstrate transparency and responsiveness to questions or concerns. Our recent decision to adjust the location of the facility, siting it farther from residential areas, was partially in response to such feedback.
We remain available and willing to maintain a dialogue with the township as the project continues to progress through the federal regulatory process.
More information about the project can be viewed on our website.
Williams Project Manager