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Constitution Pipeline presses FERC to cancel New York's denial of permit

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Constitution Pipeline presses FERC to cancel New York's denial of permit

Constitution Pipeline Co. LLC renewed a request to the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission to set aside New York's authority to deny a water permit for the company's proposed 121-mile, 650-MMcf/d natural gas pipeline after state action blocked the project.

Constitution claimed the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation did not act within the statutory time limit for action on a Clean Water Act Section 401 permit application, which is typically one year. The failure to act within this time frame should result in a waiver of the state's authority to issue permits under Section 401, the company said. (FERC docket CP18-5)

Constitution, backed by subsidiaries of Williams Cos. Inc., Cabot Oil & Gas Corp., WGL Holdings Inc. and Duke Energy Corp.'s Piedmont Natural Gas Co. Inc., made the argument in a Nov. 28 filing to reinforce an Oct. 11 petition. In that petition, Constitution asked FERC to overrule the New York agency's denial of the water permit. The project developer said it resubmitted its application to the state agency twice between 2014 and 2015, after an initial application was submitted in August 2013. The state agency rejected the permit in April 2016.

On Sept. 1, Constitution asked the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 2nd Circuit to reverse an Aug. 18 decision upholding the state's decision. The court said it could not rule on the issue because the claim was within the jurisdiction of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit. (U.S. Appeals Court for the 2nd Circuit docket 16-1568)

In September, FERC waived the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation's permitting authority in the case of Millennium Pipeline Co. LLC's Valley Lateral project.