New Jersey's Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) told FERC Monday that Spectra Energy's proposed route for its New Jersey-New York expansion of its Texas Eastern Transmission and Algonquin Gas Transmission systems is "unacceptable."

As currently proposed, the project "would adversely impact a significant amount of protected freshwater wetlands..." DEP said in a letter to the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission. "We assert that there are better alternative routes available that have not been examined, including routes that do not significantly traverse New Jersey public lands, municipal park lands or state parks."

The Spectra project entails 16 miles of new pipeline and five miles of replacement line. It would have a capacity of 800 MMcf/d and be owned 100% by Spectra (see Daily GPI, Dec. 29, 2009). It is slated to be completed in November 2013. However, the relatively small project has faced fierce opposition in New Jersey.

Spectra Energy has just launched a website -- www.yesgaspipeline.org -- to counter the website of project opponents, www.nogaspipeline.org.

"Like most large-scale public works projects, there has been a lot of misinformation about the NJ/NY Expansion Project," Spectra said. "This website will keep the public informed about the need for the project, the over-design of safety factors built into this proposed pipeline [and] the benefits that this pipeline will bring to the community as well as provide an avenue for members of the public to ask the Spectra Energy team questions related to the project."

The mayor of Jersey City, NJ, and other city officials have been vocal opponents of the project, which would pass through their town (see Daily GPI, Nov. 11). The city council there is considering zoning changes that are intended to stymie the pipeline.

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