Putnam County passes Resolution calling for studies and insurance prior to approval of Spectra Energy’s natural gas Algonquin pipeline expansion (AIM)

(Carmel, NY) Stop the Algonquin Pipeline Expansion (www.sape2016.org) is pleased to announce that a resolution passed the Putnam County Legislature by a vote of 8-1 on May 6, 2014. The resolution is a recognition by Putnam legislators that there are many unresolved questions and concerns regarding the Spectra Energy Partners Algonquin Incremental Market (AIM) Project, and that before this project goes forward, actions must be taken to protect public health and safety, as well as property values in our region. These include the following:

  • An independent air emissions baseline assessment;
  • A comprehensive and transparent Health Impact Assessment (HIA), by an independent party, including a cumulative impacts analysis;/li>
  • An independent risk assessment of a potentially catastrophic explosion of the 42” diameter high pressure pipeline to be built in close proximity to the Indian Point nuclear power plant and its radioactive spent fuel rods;/li>
  • A full cost analysis of emergency response measures; and proof of insurance or self-insurance by Algonquin Transmission LLC and Spectra Energy Partners./li>

At the meeting, comments by Paula Clair, Garrison resident, included:

“We live in a time when there is intense pressure on public officials to do the bidding of industry over the interests of their own constituents…Tonight, the Putnam County Legislature has passed a resolution to protect their constituents’ health, protect their constituents’ safety, and even their property values, because no one wants to purchase a house in an unhealthy region.” North Salem resident, Suzannah Glidden, states “As a resident living near the Southeast compressor station and already affected by its emissions and blow downs when the wind blows from that direction, I’m particularly relieved to see these measures heralded by a legislature that puts first its mandate to keep our health and safety protected.”

The next step is for the legislators to petition the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC), the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) and other permitting agencies to make these demands a condition of granting the permit, and that, as stated in their resolution, a moratorium should be in place until such actions described in the resolution are satisfactorily completed and actions taken to mitigate any risk to the public or property.

As stated in the resolution, “a Moratorium be enacted on this project, until such air emissions baseline assessment, Health Impact Assessment (HIA), and risk assessment are completed and reviewed by industry, local government officials, advocates and the public, health impacts are fully addressed and mitigated that fully protect and preserve the health and safety of residents, and evidence of acceptable levels of insurance and self-insurance represented by segregated cash reserves, as aforesaid, are presented and approved by all interested parties.”

We, at SAPE, are gratified that the Putnam Legislature understands the serious threats to the health, safety and quality of life of residents in their county, as well as the local economic impacts from this project, and is acting to protect and preserve our region and its inhabitants.

SAPE www.sape2016.org co-founders: Paula Clair, Suzannah Glidden, Susan McDonnell, Jerry Ravnitzky, Marian Rose, Ellen Weininger, Susan Van Dolsen

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