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Yorktown Residents Protest Proposed Spectra Pipeline

A screen shot of the map for Spectra Energy's Algonquin Pipeline expansion proposal.
A screen shot of the map for Spectra Energy's Algonquin Pipeline expansion proposal. Photo Credit: Spectra Energy/Screen shot

YORKTOWN, N.Y. -- Yorktown residents rallied at town hall last week to speak out against a proposed pipeline that has drawn the ire of residents.

The expansion of the Spectra Algonquin pipeline recently received approval from the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission.

The project involves replacing about 20.1 miles of natural gas pipeline that is 26 inches in diameter with larger pipeline material of 42 inches in diameter, according to FERC and would go through Yorktown. Spectra presented its plans at a work session in Yorktown.

Jeremy Newberger said he is very concerned about the project, especially it's proximity to Indian Point.

"One human error or natural disaster could cause a major breach and cataclysmic event," Newberger said.

Newberger said Supervisor Michael Grace has been turning the town into a welcome mat for Spectra.

"Their plans for the construction and pigging stations are out of a horror film," Newberger said. "I am concerned for the safety of my family, our friends, our neighbors, and the entire community. It is only five years since the Deepwater Horizon BP oil disaster and four years since the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear disaster. If you think these things don't happen then you have a short memory."

Anne Fleurat said the work session was a "real farce."

"No direct questions or follow-ups were allowed," Fleurat said. "The concerned citizens in attendance were not happy with the rush to have this nightmare start but there's our Town Supervisor handing them the town. Every other town in Northern Westchester is still attempting to block or slow this disaster down, but not Yorktown."

Grace said the town has no regulatory authority over the pipeline.

"We'll be dealing with construction issues," Grace said. "Hopefully, it will proceed smoothly."

The work session was to allow Spectra to give residents an update and respond to requests for more information.

"Anyone with questions was asked them to put them in writing," Grace said. "We only had a limited time. It was supposed to go for two hours, but Spectra ended up staying for 2.5 hours. I thought the meeting was very informative, it went well."

Grace said every question that was submitted was answered.

"Everyone got the opportunity to be heard," Grace said.

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