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Local environmentalist: Cuomo should help stop pipeline expansion


ITHACA — A local environmentalist is urging the community to tell Governor Cuomo to deny a key certification for a pipeline expansion project.

Walter Hang, the president of the Ithaca firm Toxics Targeting, held a press conference Friday. He explained why his company has drafted a letter that asks the governor to deny a required water quality certification for the New Market project.

“The existing Dominion pipeline has had a whole array of very serious contamination releases related to its operation, and we believe that these problems, which were never cleaned up to state standards in many instances, will require the governor to deny a Section 401 Water Quality Certification,” Hang said.

Hang says if the governor doesn’t deny it, the authority to approve will be given to a federal commission.

“Because if the governor doesn’t deny it within one year of the notice of complete application then the governor would lose that privilege of making a decision and then that authority would revert to the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission that’s already granted conditional approvals,” Hang said.

Public comment on the proposed project ends August 5th. Hang says he has already collected over 100 letters to the governor.