NORWICH – One of Chenango County’s leading coalitions for alternative energy is opposing county support for the Constitution Pipeline, a natural gas delivery system proposed to run through parts of the county.
Chenango Community Action for Renewable Energy (C-CARE) says the County Board of Supervisors failed heedfulness when board members adopted a resolution in December supporting construction of the 124-mile long natural gas pipeline without much discussion.
If built, the Constitution Pipeline would connect existing pipelines in Susquehanna County, Penn. and the Town of Wright in Schoharie County, NY via a route which passes through the Chenango County towns of Afton and Bainbridge.
While most Chenango County officials say the project would be economically beneficial for homes and businesses in those townships, C-CARE is urging officials to probe deeper. In a letter submitted to the board last week, C-CARE Chairperson Kenneth Fogarty expressed concerns that the board may have acted to hastily.
Fogarty referenced comments made by Columbus Town Supervisor Tom Grace, the only supervisor who opposed the resolution of support back in December. At the time, Grace said the board ought to have more discussions before adopting an official stance on the contested Constitution Pipeline project.
Fogarty shared his “disappointment with the lack of any substantive followup discussion” and cited recent incidents nationwide in which governments seemingly overlooked potential health risks of largescale projects, including the water contamination crisis in Flint, Mich.
“For the matter at hand, I am hopeful that (the Board of Supervisors) will revisit its decision in support of the Constitution Pipeline, and perhaps schedule a public hearing where opinions on the project can be presented,” Fogarty stated. “In the interest of governmental transparency and to strengthen confidence in local government, it would be useful to allow questions to the (Board of Supervisors).”..