Industries Environmental Impact Statements (EISs)
Draft EIS for the New Jersey - New York Expansion Project (Docket No. CP11-56-000)
Issued: September 9, 2011
FERC issues Draft Environmental Impact Statement on New Jersey - New York Expansion Project (Docket No. CP11-56-000).
The staff of the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (Commission or FERC) has prepared a draft environmental impact statement (EIS) for the New Jersey - New York Expansion Project (Project).
The proposed Project facilities would be located in the Boroughs of Staten Island and Manhattan, New York; Hudson, Union, Bergen, and Morris Counties, New Jersey; and Middlesex County, Connecticut, and include:
- Construction and operation of 19.8 miles of new and replacement 42- and 30-inch-diameter pipeline;
- Abandonment of 8.95 miles of existing pipeline;
- Construction and operation of six new metering and regulating (M&R) stations;
- Modification of four existing compressor stations; and
- Various ancillary facilities including taps, valves, launchers, and receivers.
The EIS has been prepared in compliance with the requirements of the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA), the Council on Environmental Quality regulations for implementing NEPA (40 Code of Federal Regulations [CFR] 1500–1508), and FERC regulations implementing NEPA (18 CFR 380).
The conclusions and recommendations presented in the EIS are those of the FERC environmental staff. Input from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, U.S. Department of Transportation, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, New York City Mayor’s Office, and New York City Department of Environmental Protection as cooperating agencies, was considered during the development of our conclusions and recommendations; however, they would present their own conclusions and recommendations in their Record of Decision, and would adopt the final EIS per 40 CFR 1506.3 if, after an independent review of the document, they conclude that their permitting requirements have been satisfied.
FERC Staff concludes that, if the proposed Project is approved, constructed, and operated, the proposed facilities would result in some adverse environmental impacts. However, these impacts would be reduced to less-than-significant levels with the implementation of Texas Eastern Transmission, LP’s (Texas Eastern) and Algonquin Gas Transmission, LLC’s (Algonquin) proposed minimization and mitigation measures and the additional measures recommended in the draft EIS. These conclusions are supported by the following:
- The proposed Project would be collocated with existing pipeline, roadway, railway, and/or utility rights-of-way for approximately 13 miles, or about 66 percent of the route;
- Texas Eastern and Algonquin would obtain all necessary federal, state, and local permits, approvals, and authorizations prior to commencement of construction;
- Texas Eastern and Algonquin would implement its Project-specific Erosion and Sedimentation Control Plan which is based on the mitigation measures contained in the FERC’s Upland Erosion Control, Revegetation, and Maintenance Plan and Wetland and Waterbody Construction and Mitigation Procedures, as well as additional Project-specific construction and restoration plans, each of which would reduce and mitigate impacts on natural resources during construction and operation of the proposed Project;
- Of the 33 waterbodies crossed by the project, 15 would be crossed via horizontal directional drill and 8 would be crossed via dry crossing methods; and
- Texas Eastern and Algonquin would complete all necessary surveys for cultural resources, and the appropriate consultations with the State Historic Preservation Officers would be completed before initiating construction.
Comments on the draft EIS must be received in Washington, DC on or before October 31, 2011. Once the final EIS is issued, the FERC Commissioners will take into consideration staff’s recommendations when they make a decision on the Project.