FERC has given Millennium Pipeline Co. LLC permission to construct most of its Eastern System Upgrade (ESU) project, which would provide an additional 223,000 Dth/d of firm transportation service to local distribution companies (LDC) and municipalities in New York.

On Tuesday, the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission said Millennium could begin constructing facilities in New York’s Delaware, Orange, Rockland and Sullivan counties [CP16-486]. The Commission also authorized the company to use contractor yards and staging areas for the project, and approved 12 project modifications.

However, the authorization omitted proposed pipeline facilities within the Huckleberry Ridge State Forest. FERC said the company needed to file for regulatory approval with the New York Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC).

“Millennium should file its temporary revocable permit/easement agreement from the DEC and request a separate notice to proceed before work can begin at that location,” FERC said.

The ESU project calls for building about eight miles of 30- and 36-inch diameter pipeline looping in Orange County, most of which would be built either overlapping or adjacent to the existing pipeline right-of-way. Highland, a compressor station with 22,400 hp, would be built in Sullivan County.

The project also calls for adding 22,400 hp to an existing compressor station in Delaware County; modifying an existing meter and regulation (M&R) station in Rockland County and an interconnect in Orange County; adding pipeline appurtenant facilities at existing M&R stations in Orange County; and constructing an alternate interconnect to the 16-inch diameter Valley Lateral.

Millennium first submitted plans for the ESU to FERC in August 2016. The project received a favorable environmental assessment from the Commission last March, and the DEC awarded a key water quality certification in September. But environmental groups, including the Delaware Riverkeeper Network, oppose the project, and petitioned FERC for a rehearing earlier this month.