August 25, 2016
CT Green Guide

Pipeline developers press on despite Mass. court ruling setback

Despite a recent Massachusetts Supreme Court ruling that electric ratepayers in that state don't have to pay for natural gas pipeline expansion, developers of the Access Northeast say they remain "firmly committed" to bringing more gas into New England.

The developers of the proposed expansion of the Algonquin Eversource -- Spectra Energy, Eversource and National Grid -- sent a letter to New England policymakers this week warning that "the status quo is not sustainable."

The letter said increasing natural-gas capacity to generate electricity will lower prices for ratepayers. The developers said renewable energy, while important, won't be able to provide the kind of capacity needed in times of high demand "for years to come."

The companies noted that other New England states, including Connecticut, are currently involved in their own approval processes for natural gas contracts.

While Massachusetts is seen as a key state for Access Northeast, the developers said the court's Aug. 17 decision does not impact the other states, and said that state approvals can require that no state pay more than its share of an expansion project.

Eversource this week withdrew proposed contracts it had filed with Massachusetts' utility regulator.

Read more

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