NYC Spectra Pipeline Expansion Sparks Resident Concerns About Explosions and Radon

by , 05/06/13

Pipeline, fracking nyc, hydrofracking, mayor Bloomberg planyc, nj ny expansion project, natural gas nyc, natural gas west village, occupy the pipeline, spectra pipeline, spectra pipeline nyc, natural gas explosion, duke energy, natural gas risks, natural gas radon

Most New Yorkers have heard of the Spectra natural gas pipeline and the dangers it poses – but until recently, it’s felt like a vague, far-off worry that may or may not happen. Unfortunately that couldn’t be further from the truth, as the pipeline (also referred to as NJ-NY Expansion Project) is already in progress and is set to be complete this fall, bringing with it the very clear and present danger of exposure to radon (a known cancer-causing radioactive gas) and high-pressure gas explosions. The pipeline is being built directly underneath Manhattan’s West Village, and residents in the area are very concerned about the possibility of flammable water coming out of their taps as seen in the video after the jump. Their arguments are not unfounded – in 2012 alone, there were 244 pipeline incidents resulting in 10 deaths and over $180 million in damages.

The pipeline received the green light early last year as part of Mayor Bloomberg’s PlaNYC 2030 report to divert reliance upon coal energy. However, activists argue that the potential health, environmental and safety risks of adopting natural gas outweigh the city’s efforts to reduce energy costs. “In places where drilling has happened, some homeowners have actually been able to set their faucets on fire,” explains a woman activist in the viral video campaign protesting against the pipeline produced by nonprofit group Occupy The Pipeline.

Activists have been staging vigils, protests and halting construction against the approved $1.2 billion project to no avail. The new pipeline will distribute 800 million barrels of gas per day directly underneath the West Village and is set to be complete by fall.

In 2004, Spectra’s parent company, Duke Energy, caused a 1,000 foot-high fireball explosion due to a faulty valve at its Texas gas facility. According to a report on U.S. pipeline safety, regular inspection of natural gas pipelines is lacking with only 7 percent of pipelines requiring rigorous inspection.  With a faulty track record and lack of government safety inspections worry of potential fatal explosions and water poisoning due to the coming pipeline is warranted.

Check out Occupy The Pipeline’s viral video above or at this link.

+ Occupy The Pipeline

Via Huffington Post


1 Comment

  1. healymum May 6, 2013 at 12:45 pm
    Please check the facts and correct this article. For NYC, flammable faucets are not a risk, radon is. Don't let folks dismiss this second concern, because the first is mis-stated. No one in NYC should fear "the possibility of flammable water coming out of their taps"--that is a phenomenon that sometimes happens when a water well is damaged by nearby fracking. That's a rural harm from fracking; here's an urban one: The Spectra Pipeline is a natural gas pipeline. Once operational, it would bring us fracked gas from nearby Pennsylvania. That gas--because it's from very-radioactive Marcellus Shale--is likely to carry along with it way-too-high levels of radon. And THAT is what we in NYC fear. When you cook with the gas, the radon doesn't get burned away. If you have a tiny, windowless NYC kitchen, most of it will just sit in the room with you. Don't inhale! because radon is the #1 cause of lung cancer in non-smokers. And keep your kids and pets out of the kitchen, because radon tends to sink low in the room. This is a real and dangerous possibility. Thanks for getting the word out.