Source: Williams

The reality of the proposed Rockaways natural gas pipeline project came one step closer to fruition this week as Williams Transco, the company looking to build it, officially filed an application with the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) to begin the project, according to a report by Natural Gas Watch.

As we’ve previously reported, opposition to the pipeline was heated, but federal legislation signed by President Obama last month made it legal for companies like Williams Transco to do construction in Gateway National Recreational Area, a federal parkland that includes Floyd Bennett Field. The filing is only the latest formal action; Williams has been providing FERC with pre-filing reports and documentation for several years – and locals have been filing statements of opposition, too.

The pipeline, officially known as the Rockaway Delivery Lateral Project, is set to run through the Jamaica Bay wetlands, underneath Jacob Riis Park and ending at Floyd Bennett Field where a new meter and regulating station will be built in two of the park’s historic hangars.

Environmentalists and local residents have voiced opposition to the project due to fears  of the proposed new regulating station at Floyd Bennett Field being flooded in the event of another storm like Hurricane Sandy, as well as other safety, environmental and security concerns.

Williams Transco claims that the pipeline will provide much needed extra energy to New York and “supply flexibility and increased capacity to meet future incremental demand growth.”

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  • Karen Orlando

    Willie, A big thanks to you and to Sheepshead Bites for continuing coverage of this issue. It’s a confusing project and many people don’t realize that the pipelines (two) that will pass under the Rockaway Inlet are actually part of National Grid’s accompanying project and are so far scheduled for construction next month. The Mayor’s office issued a negative declaration for National Grid’s project some time ago and were it not for Hurricane Sandy, drilling for that project would have already been under way by now. Most of the information about National Grid’s project I have found actually comes through Williams in their FERC paperwork though. Who knows whether National Grid will be delayed further from starting their project because of ongoing recovery work still underway from Sandy.