In August, 2015 submitted an application to the NY Thruway Authority (NYSTA) for a Use and Occupancy Permit. On November 16, NYSTA notified all “involved agencies,” including the 37 municipalities through which the pipelines would pass, that the Authority was seeking to be lead agency in the State Environmental Quality Review (SEQR) for the project. In a show of overwhelming opposition, 29 municipalities objected to NYSTA’s bid and requested that the NYS Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) serve as lead agency instead. In response, the DEC agreed just days before the holidays to “co-lead” the SEQR with NYSTA, and will effectively oversee evaluation of this complex environmental review.
The proposed pipelines would add yet another mode of dangerous crude oil transport in New York, in addition to current transport by rail and barge. Each pipeline would have the capacity to carry 8.7 million gallons of oil per day, which would more than double the number of “bomb trains” traveling to the Port of Albany on a daily basis during the peak of Bakken crude production in 2014. The proposed project would also do nothing to alleviate bomb train traffic through the Hudson Valley, which is bound for refineries in Pennsylvania that would not be served by the pipelines.