New York Denies Permit for Expansion of Williams Cos. Pipeline

A setback for Tulsa’s Williams Cos. in its efforts to build a Northeast Supply Enhancement natural gas pipeline project in New York.

The state denied the company a key water quality permit in a move similar to the state’s denials of the same permit to two other gas pipelines in recent years.

The rejection was made by the New York Department of Environmental Conservation and was “without prejudice.” It explained the denial was made because Williams Cos. application materials were reportedly incomplete and an ongoing environmental review could produce changes to the project.

The denial came after the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission last month issued a favorable draft environmental impact statement for the pipeline.

The New York Environmental agency two years ago denied a water quality permit for Williams’ 124-mile long Constitution pipeline. The state said the project failed to address significant water quality impacts. Last year, it also denied a water permit to the National Fuel Gas Company’s Northern Access project saying the construction technique would block the flow of streams.

The response from Williams?  A spokesman said the company will resubmit the water permit application.

“During much of the past year we have been working closely” with the DEC to satisfy its conditions, he said.

The Northeast Supply Enhancement project is meant to expand the Transcontinental Gas pipeline by 37 miles across New York, New Jersey and Pennsylvania. It also involves construction of a new compressor station in Somerset County, New Jersey.