President's Corner
Sharyn Magee

PennEast Pipeline Proposal — A BAD IDEA!

PennEast has proposed a natural gas pipeline that would cross under the Delaware River near Milford, traverse Hunterdon County, and end in Hopewell Township near the Pole Farm, crossing preserved farmland and forested reserves with the potential to cause far-reaching environmental damage.

Washington Crossing Audubon Society opposes any pipeline crossing or encroaching on preserved lands or farmland to prevent loss of biodiversity and water quality on those lands. The proposed PennEast pipeline should use only existing rights-of-ways to minimize environmental disturbance.

WCAS also believes that a properly executed environmental impact assessment must be an integral part of the federal regulatory review process. The environmental impact study should assess the pipeline's impact on regional biodiversity, including threatened and endangered bird species and other species, and on surface and ground water. Since the main threat to biodiversity is habitat loss, degradation, and fragmentation, the proposed pipeline presents a major threat to the regionís already stressed biodiversity.

Grassland birds, rapidly decreasing in New Jersey, and pollinating insects rely on preserved farmlands on the proposed route. Forested reserves lose healthy interior breeding bird populations and other species when fragmented. Rights-of -way through mature forest allow the invasion of Brown-headed Cowbirds, a nest predator, and invasive plant species, which then colonize the forest floor, displacing native flora and fauna.

Our preserved lands and farmlands provide valuable environmental and agricultural benefits, as well as intangible quality of life benefits to all of us. These lands were often preserved with public money with the intent that we never lose those desired benefits. We urge our members to keep informed and to voice their opinions at public meetings, in print and online media, and through social media.

View other President's Messages from Sharyn:

  1. Connections - Baldpate Mountain
  2. The Silent Crisis
  3. Protect Preserved Land
  4. Comments on PennEast's Draft FERC Resource Report 3
  5. Citizen Science
  6. PennEast Pipeline Proposal — A BAD IDEA!

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Last revision: Monday, August 29, 2016