Last night, the Vernon Township Council passed a resolution opposing a Tennessee Gas proposal to build two new gas compressor stations in North Jersey, part of a growing wave of opposition to the fossil fuel project.
The Tennessee Gas “East 300 Upgrade” expansion involves the construction of two new gas compressor stations — one in Wantage Township that would more than triple the size of the existing facility there, and one in West Milford at the site of a former quarry adjacent to the Monksville Reservoir.
Compressor stations maintain or increase pressure in natural gas transmission lines, and operators regularly “blow down” the facilities to release gas when too much pressure has built up. These new compressors would deliver higher volumes of fracked gas from Pennsylvania to Westchester County. This project serves no benefit to New Jersey residents but brings increased danger, air pollution, and noise to local communities.
Local residents are especially concerned about the serious risks of building a major fossil fuel processing facility within 2,000 feet of the Monksville Reservoir, since 3.5 million people source their drinking water from this reservoir system.
Vernon became the seventh municipality to pass a resolution opposing the Tennessee Gas expansion, joining Bloomfield, Montague, Wantage, Hamburg, Alpine, and Ringwood. The Somerset County Board of Commissioners also passed a resolution against the project.
“By passing strong resolutions against Tennessee Gas Pipeline Company’s dangerous proposal, local elected officials are standing up for the health and safety of our state, and the water supply of millions,” said Sam DiFalco, an organizer with Food & Water Watch. “The real power lies with Governor Murphy, who must reject this project. He cannot achieve his climate goals while approving a dangerous and unnecessary fossil fuel expansion project intended to benefit an out-of-state utility company.”