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New York City Council Testimony on the Northeast Supply Enhancement Project

Today, the Partnership for New York City submitted testimony to the New York City Council in support of the Northeast Supply Enhancement Project:

On behalf of the Partnership for New York City, this testimony is to highlight the need for the Northeast Supply Enhancement Project (“NESE”). The Partnership represents business leaders and major employers working to promote economic growth and job creation in New York.

New York needs world-class infrastructure, including abundant and reliable sources of energy, to maintain its position as the global center for finance, business and culture. Transco’s existing pipeline has reliably served the New York City area for more than 60 years and currently provides half of the gas consumed in the city.

The NESE project is an expansion of the existing Transco pipeline infrastructure. It is expected to provide an additional 400 million cubic feet of natural gas per day to National Grid customers in New York City and on Long Island—areas that are experiencing significant economic and population growth.

Increasing the availability of cleaner, more reliable energy is crucial to meet current and future economic development and housing needs. The NESE project will establish a critical new link to additional supplies, making access to natural gas more reliable via the safest method for transporting energy.

Thanks to increased natural gas usage and the displacement of heating fuel oils, New York City is currently experiencing its cleanest air in more than 50 years. This project alone will provide for the displacement of more than 900,000 barrels of oil per year, reduce carbon dioxide emissions by more than 200,000 tons per year, which is the equivalent of removing 500,000 cars from the road a year. This project will also help reduce other local emissions by more than 300 tons per year, including smog, acid rain and particulates that have negative health and environmental effects.

The NESE project is even more urgent because of the scheduled phase out of Indian Point nuclear power production and the shortage of gas that has led to a moratorium on new developments in Westchester County and, shortly, in New York City and Long Island. New York state is making good progress in its transition to increased reliance on renewable energy, but an expanded supply of natural gas is essential to supporting this transition during the next few decades. Uncertainty over the energy supply will discourage investment in jobs and housing that the city desperately needs. The NESE must move forward immediately.