June 29, 2016

Watson Coleman Announces SAFER Pipelines Act


Ewing, NJ (June 29, 2016) -- At Baldpate Mountain, Congresswoman Bonnie Watson Coleman (NJ-12) announced new legislation that would reform the gas pipeline approval process undertaken by the Federal Energy Regulatory Committee (FERC) in order to ensure a comprehensive analysis that considers the cumulative impact of gas pipeline projects and better assesses need for new pipelines. 

The Safe and Accountable Federal Energy Review — or SAFER — Pipelines Act of 2016 would require FERC to take the following steps when considering a pipeline application:

  • Undertake an evidentiary hearing or cumulative review of planned energy infrastructure projects in the region, reviewing their necessity and impact relative to one another as they actually operate, not as standalone projects;
  • Analyze the cumulative environmental impact of the proposed pipeline in combination with existing gas pipelines and;
  • Monitor approved projects for five years to ensure agreed upon environmental mitigation steps have been fully implemented.

"The process that FERC uses to approve pipelines is inherently flawed, and
genuinely threatens our environment, green spaces and water resources, and
public and private lands, doing so without ever proving that these pipelines
are necessary," Watson Coleman said. "The SAFER Pipelines Act would make
critical changes to how FERC considers pipeline proposals by creating a
comprehensive framework that considers the cumulative impacts of pipelines,
and ensures they are truly necessary before approving them. Whether it's
PennEast here in New Jersey, or a proposed pipeline across the country, FERC
should only approve applications that are necessary and serve the public good
as their first priority."

To see the bill, which will be introduced when Congress returns from the July 4th holiday, click here. For a fact sheet,