NYC Public Advocate Candidate Pledge to Oppose the Williams NESE Fracked Gas Pipeline

The Williams Northeast Supply Enhancement (NESE) pipeline, a proposed fracked gas pipeline that would run through the waters off Brooklyn, Queens, and Staten Island, would endanger local communities and the environment, while further locking our state into dependence on fossil fuels at a time when we must be shifting as quickly as possible to 100 percent renewable energy.

The 23-mile pipeline proposed by Williams, an Oklahoma-based company with a poor safety record, would run from New Jersey to Rockaway. It would come as close as a mile to Staten Island and continue past Coney Island and other Brooklyn beaches to link up with two existing pipelines off the Rockaway shore.

As a candidate for NYC Public Advocate, I oppose this pipeline for these reasons:

-The project poses immediate risks to human health and to marine life. During its year-long construction, the project would churn up arsenic, lead, mercury, DDT, dioxins, and PCBs, endangering beachgoers and marine life.

-The pipeline undercuts state promises on climate. Allowing the construction of a new pipeline to carry fracked gas would undermine New York’s commitment to uphold the Paris Agreement and drastically reduce the greenhouse gas emissions that are warming the planet.

-There’s no need for the gas this costly pipeline would carry. There’s no big new market for gas as a heating fuel. And with the region building more solar and wind capacity, there won’t be an uptick in demand for gas to generate electricity. If demand for the gas fails to materialize, National Grid customers in Brooklyn, Queens, and Staten Island would be forced to pay for the $926.5 million project through higher rates.

-Building a new pipeline in the areas that were ravaged by Superstorm Sandy is unconscionable. If we are to adequately confront the threat of climate change, we must end our reliance on fossil fuels—and defeat new fossil fuel projects such as the Williams Pipeline, and instead invest in renewable energy.

If elected Public Advocate I pledge to use my position as the city watchdog and ombudsman to:

-Publicly speak out against this dangerous and unnecessary pipeline.
-Sign on to a letter to Governor Cuomo urging him to deny the DEC permits necessary for the construction of the Williams pipeline.
-Look into introducing legislation to the City Council that would halt all new fossil fuel projects like the Williams NESE fracked gas pipeline.
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