November 10, 2018

Tennessee Gas "261 Upgrade" Project now filed with FERC, accepting Motions to Intervene

Tennessee Gas (TGP, subsidiary of Kinder Morgan), as part of the Columbia Gas Reliability Plan, is proposing a project labeled "261 Upgrade", named for Compressor Station #261 in Agawam. This proposal is to "provide reliability" to Holyoke and Columbia Gas (CMA) systems and to allow for new gas customers for Columbia Gas (CMA). It consists of several components - primarily the "Looping Project" and "Horsepower (HP) Replacement Project". There is also a Metering & Regulation (M&R) station planned for Longmeadow that TGP considers a separate project.

- The Looping Project includes 2.1 miles of 12-inch-diameter loop to be installed on Tennessee’s existing 10" 261B-100 pipeline. The majority of the loop will be located within Tennessee’s existing pipeline corridors and will replace an existing inactive 6-inch-diameter pipeline where feasible. This would include a new pigging launcher at the compressor station site and a new receiver at the end of the loop approx. 2 miles to the north.

- The HP Replacement Project involves removing two existing older units (a Solar Saturn installed in 1965 and a Solar Centaur installed in 1991) and installing a new Solar Taurus 70 unit. This would result in an overall increase of 4,418 horsepower to the station, and an increase of up to 7.8 decibels in noise level to nearby dwellings. There doesn't appear to be data provided on the difference in emissions between the compressor engines being removed and the one being installed. This design will provide higher pressure into the 10-inch 261B-100 pipeline, and will increase the operational reliability to serve Holyoke Gas & Electric customer.

** Longmeadow Metering & Regulation (M&R) Station. Also tied to this project is a new Metering and Regulation (M&R) station along the TGP 200 line in Longmeadow. TGP has tried to claim that this is separate, but in the interest of not allowing segmentation, the MEPA process has required them to consider this project along with the 261 Upgrades  when addressing their work with Columbia Gas and Holyoke Gas & Electric. TGP's filing with FERC, filed AFTER Secretary of Energy and Environmental Affairs Matt Beaton's insistence on inclusion of this M&R station for state permitting purposes, still insists that this station is a separate project, even though it serves the same end use project for the same customer - Columbia Gas' Reliability Plan.

This project is now filed with FERC under Docket number CP19-7.
The deadline for filing as an intervenor - on this docket is November 23, 2018.

As an intervenor, you gain the right to participate in a hearing, file a brief, and challenge a FERC decision (you don’t have these rights if you simply file comments).Intervening does not require you to hire a lawyer or participate further, it simply keeps the options open for you.

The regulatory requirements specify what you should include in your motion; be sure to provide sufficient detail to show that you have or represent an “interest which may be directly affected by the outcome of the proceeding”.  This can include your status as a landowners, ratepayer, etc.  Also state that you are opposed to the project.

To qualify as an intervenor, you should:

• Provide sufficient detail to show that you have or represent an “interest which may be directly affected by the outcome of the proceeding”

• Also state that you are opposed to the project (or whatever position you are taking, “to the extent known”)

• State that you have interests that cannot adequately be represented by another party, bring a unique perspective, etc

Further details of who may file as an intervenor are provided in our step-by-step filing instructions on No Fracked Gas in Mass.  Anyone can file, but it will be up to FERC to determine if your statement of standing has any validity.

» See Motions to Intervene and other FERC and MEPA documents
Check back with this page for subsequent filings.

Comments on the project may be filed at any time by anyone, not just intervenors. The simplest way is to use FERC’s e-Comment method. If you wish to send documents or attachments to your comments, you must use the e-File method. Any comments on the docket should be relevant to the project and it’s potential impacts.

» For info on how to use the FERC website, visit our FERC page

Climate activists get involved in Agawam pipeline debate
By Mary C. Serreze, MassLive
November 9, 2018

Plans by a Texas energy company to upgrade natural gas pipeline and compressor facilities in Agawam could see some opposition.

The Berkshire Environmental Action Team and Pipe Line Awareness Network for the Northeast, Inc., recently filed "motions to intervene" in federal licensing deliberations related to Tennessee Gas Pipeline Co. and its so-called "261 Upgrade Project."
The two groups, which fight pipelines in Massachusetts and New England, filed their requests with the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission.

"The construction of this pipeline and expansion of the compressor station would disturb land, cut through wetlands, put more toxic chemicals in the air, and emit more greenhouse gas that contributes to climate change," wrote BEAT leaders Jane Winn and by Rosemary Wessel.

» More information on Tennessee Gas’s Agawam project, visit

» See our Step by Step Instructions on filing as an intervenor

$100M LNG plant proposed on Route 20 in Charlton

By Matthew Tota, Worcester Telegram
November 4, 2018

Liberty Energy Trust has proposed construction of a more than $100-million LNG plant — operating under the name Northeast Energy Center LLC — on roughly 25 acres of a 220-acre wooded site at 249 Sturbridge Road (Route 20). The company will work with engineers from the Methuen-based firm Northstar Industries, in which it owns a major stake.

The project has entered the state’s permitting process and needs approval from both the state Department of Public Utilities and the Energy Facilities Siting Board. Liberty hopes to complete construction on the plant by 2020.

DPU has scheduled a public hearing on the project at 7 p.m. Nov. 13
at the Charlton municipal offices, 37 Main St.

Energy Facilities Siting Board Hearing
Tuesday, November 13, 2018 at 7:00 p.m.
Charlton Municipal Offices, Board of Selectmen Meeting Room
37 Main Street, Charlton, MA 01507

Written Comment Deadline: November 30

» More information on hearing

2nd Community Meeting on the Health Impact Assessment of the Fore River Basin

This community meeting will feature an update on the Health Impact Assessment (HIA) that MAPC has been conducting in relation to the proposed Weymouth compressor station. It is very important that we pack the room and be sure that our voices and concerns are heard and addressed.
Come with your questions.
In July of 2017, after months of pressure, Gov. Baker instructed the state to conduct a review of the health impact that the proposed compressor station would have on the surrounding community — a Health Impact Assessment (HIA). Nearly a year later, the company contracted to do the assessment (MAPC) began collecting air quality samples in the Fore River Basin. From our own testing, we know that the Fore River Basin has high levels of pollution. The Basin is home to 8 industrial facilities; adding another toxic facility would further exacerbate the levels of pollution in the air. This community meeting will provide an update on the HIA.

We need folks to come with their questions and concerns about the proposed compressor station and the HIA itself. For more information about the compressor station, visit Free public event

Thursday, November 13, 2018
7 PM – 9:15 PM
Quincy High School
100 Coddington Street
Quincy, MA 02169

» Facebook Page 
» Please RSVP

Eversource writes off its investment in Access Northeast because of Columbia Gas disaster
By Jon Chesto, Boston Globe 
November 09, 2018

Eversource Energy is paying a price for the damage to the industry’s reputation: $32.9 million. That’s the pretax value of Eversource’s 40 percent stake in the proposed Access Northeast pipeline expansion project. Eversource just wrote off the full amount.

The company hasn’t officially given up on Access Northeast. But the utility’s accountants have decided, at least for now, that its share in the project is worthless. The reason? Eversource blamed the Merrimack Valley gas disaster, in a document filed Tuesday with the Securities and Exchange Commission, even though the incident didn’t take place in Eversource’s gas service territory.

» Read full story
Judge Blocks Disputed Keystone XL Pipeline
By Lisa Friedman and Coral Davenport, New York Times
November 9, 2018

The ruling, by Judge Brian Morris of United States District Court for Montana, blocked construction on the 1,179-mile pipeline, which would carry 800,000 barrels a day of petroleum from the Canadian oil sands to the Gulf Coast and has, over the past decade, become a lighting rod in broader political battles over energy, the environment and climate change.

In short, the court said, the administration failed to follow established rules and procedures for decisions like these. Specifically, it failed to provide a fact-based analysis justifying its actions.

List of Boards of Health contacting  Governor Baker grows!

The Massachusetts Association of Health Boards (MAHB) are asking Boards of Health to sign on to a letter to Governor Baker, asking him to consider and appropriately address the health hazards of fracked gas infrastructure development. The list of municipalities is now reaching 80, with over 40% of the population represented so far, and with more planning to sign soon. Residents of other Massachusetts towns and cities to should ask their Board of Health to sign on to this letter as well. It would be a powerful message to send if every municipality in the state signed on.

» More information

» View names of towns signed on. Now with links to view letters from many towns.

Dozens of slots still available in Solar Access

Working with an energy expert, you will be guided through the program, which adds a special Solar Access incentive to the existing combination of electric utility, state, and federal incentives for renewable energy. By enrolling in a UMassFive College Credit Union loan, you will own your solar panels and a heat pump and will pay less than you spend now. Solar Access is funded by the Massachusetts Clean Energy Center (MassCEC) and the Department of Energy Resources (DOER).

To see if you qualify go to this and fill out the survey or call the
Center for Eco Technology at  413-341-0418.

There are also many other programs are community based incentives like HeatSmart, Solarize Mass, combine the purchase power of whole communities for high efficiency heat pumps and solar panels for residential customers.

For news on various pipelines, FERC and the industry, check out the
Latest News Tab on our site

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