Revised Kinder-Morgan Pipeline supported by Major NE Trade Unions
December 22, 2014
From the Boston Business Journal:
Three major construction unions in New England are throwing their considerable weight behind a controversial proposal by Kinder Morgan Inc to build a new natural gas pipeline across western Massachusetts and through southern New Hampshire.
Representing a total of 84,000 workers, the Massachusetts Building Trades Council, New Hampshire Building and Construction Trades Council, and Maine State Building and Construction Trades Council endorsed the latest plan by Houston’s Kinder Morgan Inc. to build a pipeline aimed at meeting the region’s growing demand for natural gas.
“This project will create 3,000 construction jobs and be an economic boost to Massachusetts’ working families and local businesses,” said Frank Callahan, President of the Massachusetts Building Trades Council. “By solving New England’s energy supply crunch in an environmentally responsible way, the Northeast Energy Direct pipeline will reduce energy bills for families and businesses, strengthening our entire economy.”
Confronted by widespread opposition from residents and environmentalists, Kinder Morgan was recently forced to revise its original proposal to build a 127-mile pipeline all the way through western and central Massachusetts, starting in Richmond along the New York border and ending in Dracut, home to a energy terminal hub.
The revised plan calls for the pipeline to instead stretch from the New York border into Massachusetts for about 60 miles, before shooting north into New Hampshire and then eastward, where it would then dip back down into Massachusetts to the terminal hub in Dracut.
That new route bypasses many of the Bay State towns where opposition to a pipeline had grown loud and strong. And much of the revised pipeline route would be along existing electric transmission-line corridors, reducing the number of private properties through which it would have gone through under the original plan.
Even though opposition to the revised pipeline route is starting to grow in some areas of southern New Hampshire, the head of the Granite State trade union said it would actually help residents in the region.
“Kinder Morgan’s new route through New Hampshire means tens of thousands of families who are forced to rely on costly heating oil or propane in their homes would have access to natural gas for the first time,” said Joe Casey, President of the New Hampshire Building and Construction Trades Council. “High heating bills hurt families and our economy, and we need new pipeline capacity now. This proposal will create thousands of jobs for skilled workers and help reduce the cost of energy for New Hampshire families and businesses.”
Pipeline costs would be passed onto consumers in exchange for greater supply and lower long run costs, according to Kinder Morgan
EarlyBird Power Team