On Monday night, Stephentown made history by becoming the first town in New York State to pass a resolution opposing Kinder Morgan’s Northeast Energy Direct (NED) pipeline project, following the lead of more than 50 other communities along the proposed route in Massachusetts and New Hampshire, as well as the Rensselaer County Legislature, which approved its own resolution on April 14th.
The four-member Town Board unanimously approved the measure, which specifies “its strong opposition” to NED and further requests that the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) deny a Certificate of Public Convenience to the project.
Its reasons, as stated in the resolution, include the lack of benefit to local residents, opposition to the use of eminent domain, the size and pressure of the pipeline, the proximity of the route to high-voltage power lines, the lower safety standards for rural areas, the impact on local property values, the potential for catastrophic damage, and the long-term fiscal, health, safety, environmental and quality of life impacts to the community.
The resolution also acknowledges that “a huge majority of Stephentown residents” are “adamantly opposed” to NED, as evidenced by letters, emails, phone calls and attendance at the Board’s public hearing on March 23rd.
Interested residents are encouraged to attend a celebration of this milestone at the Stephentown Volunteer Fire Hall at 35 Grange Hall Road from 7:00 to 9:00 p.m. on Wednesday night. Cupcakes and coffee will be provided.