Wednesday, July 22, 2015

New Jersey county boots pipeline company from its land

Representatives of the PennEast pipeline project are no longer welcome on Mercer County public lands, according to a strongly worded letter from Mercer County Executive Brian Hughes.

Keith Brown reports for

The letter, obtained by, was sent to PennEast Tuesday afternoon. It rescinds permission to survey on county lands officials granted in December and bars the company from any activity on county owned lands to forward the proposed $1.2 billion natural gas pipeline project, which is slated to cut through portions of Mercer County along its 110-mile path.

"PennEast is directed to immediately CEASE AND DESIST all activities on County property,'' the letter reads. "Please have your company's contractor(s) immediately remove all equipment and personnel from the County's property, after returning the property to the condition it enjoyed prior to any work being conducted.''

Hughes said in a statement that the decision to kick PennEast off Mercer County public lands came after county officials discovered that the company was conducting soil borings in Baldpate Mountain, Hopewell Township, an act officials said was potentially environmentally harmful.

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