Sunoco Pipeline LP has agreed to pay to connect municipal water to homes impacted by recent horizontal directional drilling (HDD) for its Mariner East (ME) 2 natural gas liquids pipeline in southeast Pennsylvania.
Sunoco recently suspended HDD work for the pipeline after 14 families living near the pipeline construction in Chester County, PA, reported losing water pressure or murky water, the operator has said.
Spokesman Jeffrey Shields said the company has reached out to West Whiteland Township in Chester County with its plans, which would involve connecting affected homes to water supplied by utility Aqua America Inc.
"We informed West Whiteland Township that we would move forward with plans to connect homes to Aqua's municipal water supply, at our expense. We are still assessing the number of homes potentially impacted by construction that will be connected," Shields told NGI’sShale Daily. "We will be connecting households to temporary water supplies as we finalize plans for conversion. The first home should be converted to Aqua's system in a matter of days, and others will follow, depending on the availability of infrastructure in place. This will ensure the integrity of residents' water supply throughout construction."
Drilling was suspended July 3 after the initial reports of well water problems, according to Shields. Measures were taken to stabilize the drill hole and prevent infiltration to the aquifer before drilling resumed with backup water supplies in place as a precaution, he said.
Sunoco began building ME 2 in February after receiving key water-crossing and sedimentation permits from Pennsylvania. The pipeline would transport ethane, butane and propane from processing facilities in Ohio, Pennsylvania and West Virginia to the Marcus Hook Industrial Complex near Philadelphia for distribution to domestic and international markets.