• ECHO Action Editor

Senate prematurely pushing gas project

One of the saddest things I’ve ever seen is the press release endorsing Liberty Utilities’ Granite Bridge pipeline project, issued by 22 of New Hampshire’s 24 state senators.

The project is before the Public Utilities Commission and just completing the first round of discovery. Some of the most prominent senators were quoted, repeating the Liberty talking points with the kind of certainty that comes from not having yet heard a single good question.

Should we cancel the PUC proceedings, skip the Site Evaluation Committee process and just build the thing? Why make any pretense of verifying that the project makes sense for ratepayers or the environment?

Why ask any pesky questions about the significant methane leaks in Liberty’s distribution system? Who’s going to have the courage to wonder out loud if it’s likely that Liberty is going to double its business over the next 20 years … and what that would mean if we truly hope to combat climate change?

We’ve seen this scenario play out before. I pity the PUC and Office of Consumer Advocate, who are doing a good job questioning Liberty’s outrageous plan to double its asset base. I’m mostly sorry for the people because the politics of the situation will make it impossible to find any allies in the Statehouse. That Liberty press release pinned the egos and reputations of our New Hampshire senators like so many butterflies in a display case.




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