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Rosenberg issues nuanced statement on gas pipeline

Sen. Stan Rosenberg speaks at an event billed by MassDevelopoment as "Milestones at Village Hill Northampton" on the grounds of the former Northampton State Hospital Friday.

KEVIN GUTTING Sen. Stan Rosenberg speaks at an event billed by MassDevelopoment as "Milestones at Village Hill Northampton" on the grounds of the former Northampton State Hospital Friday. Purchase photo reprints »

Sen. Stanley Rosenberg, D-Amherst, clarified his position Wednesday on Tennessee Gas Pipeline’s Northeast Energy Direct project in a statement, as three area legislators prepared to attend a rally across from the Statehouse emphasizing their own positions opposing the nearly 300-mile pipeline.

In an open letter to constituents in Franklin, Hampshire and Worcester counties, Rosenberg emphasized the need to balance his opposition to having “a pipeline running through some of the most beautiful areas of Franklin County” with a need to replace 25 percent of New England’s power generation that is expected go offline in the next six years.

Rosenberg, who is widely expected to become Senate president next year, included himself as opposing the $3 billion-to-$4 billion project from crossing state-protected environmentally sensitive land, which under the Massachusetts Constitution would require a two-thirds legislative vote.

Sen. Stan Rosenberg's statement on the proposed Tennessee Gas Pipeline through Franklin County

“All of the members of the Franklin County legislative delegation are united on this,” wrote Rosenberg, whose letter follows a joint letter opposing the project last week by Sen. Benjamin Downing, D-Pittsfield, with Reps. Stephen Kulik, D-Worthington, Denise Andrews, D-Orange, and Paul Mark, D-Peru.

Yet Rosenberg, whose silence on the issue until now came under criticism in a letter to the editor in The Recorder last week, said in his open letter Wednesday, “I don’t have complete answers yet. What I do know is that the situation is complex and fluid, and unless we take appropriate steps in the near term, especially as approximately 8,300 megawatts of power from fossil and nuclear sources will have gone off-line in the New England region in the next six years, representing approximately 25 percent of all our region’s electric power, our residents, our businesses, our schools, our hospitals, our Commonwealth, could see a tripling of energy costs in the foreseeable future. Experts agree that brownouts and blackouts at peak usage times are likely across our region if those approximately 8,300 megawatts are not replaced.”

Rosenberg, who described himself as “an unabashed policy wonk” who has been a longtime champion of renewable energy and energy conservation programs for the state, added, “I issued a challenge to the energy experts I’ve been consulting: What do we need to do to be energy self-sufficient, meaning no pipelines, no transmission lines bringing hydro energy from Canada, no wind energy from Maine, utilizing only green and renewable technologies and indigenous sources, and conservation measures? What will it cost and how quickly can it be phased in to meet current and projected usage?”

He concluded by saying he doesn’t want residents and employers having to pay “exorbitant energy costs or face brownouts or blackouts because of our failure to act ... Saying ‘no’ to a proposal we don’t want is not enough. We have to show that it is unnecessary. I want the future to be powered by the greenest, most affordable, most sustainable energy possible. That’s what I’m working for.”

Immediately after Wednesday’s rally on the Boston Common, two groups of Rosenberg’s constituents walked to his office and met with a staff assistant to say that they appreciated the senator wanting to fully understand the issue, but urged him to move quickly to represent the clear sense of his constituents opposing the project, according to Mark Burton of Ashfield, who was in attendance.


SLIDESHOW Pipeline protest held in Boston

Wednesday, July 30, 2014

BOSTON — An estimated 400 to 500 people rallied on the Boston Common Wednesday, bringing their “Stop the Pipeline” message to the Statehouse. Speakers included state Reps. Stephen Kulik, Paul Mark and Denise Andrews, all opposing Tennessee Gas Pipeline Co.’s proposal for a nearly 300-mile pipeline that would cut across nine Franklin County towns on its way to Dracut, north …

The Tennessee Gas Pipeline, everything you need to know about the proposed project and its potential impact on the Pioneer Valley

Friday, May 16, 2014

The Tennessee Gas Pipeline Co. wants to upgrade its existing system through New York, Massachusetts, New Hampshire and Connecticut, which will include the pipeline expansion, additional meter stations and modifications to its existing facilities. The proposed pipeline would cut through Ashfield, Conway, Shelburne, Deerfield, Montague, Erving, Northfield, Warwick and Orange in Franklin County along the 179-mile route between Wright, N.Y., …

Legacy Comments5

This is how you're making your great return: Report: Frackers cheating Pa. landowners and gov’t out of billions. Thousands are receiving far less money than they were promised by energy companies to drill their properties. Some are being paid virtually nothing. “Don Feusner ran dairy cattle on his 370-acre slice of northern Pennsylvania until he could no longer turn a profit by farming. Then, at age 60, he sold all but a few Angus and aimed for a comfortable retirement on money from drilling his land for natural gas instead. It seemed promising. Two wells drilled on his lease hit as sweet a spot as the Marcellus shale could offer – tens of millions of cubic feet of natural gas gushed forth. Last December, he received a check for $8,506 for a month’s share of the gas. Then one day in April, Feusner ripped open his royalty envelope to find that while his wells were still producing the same amount of gas, the gusher of cash had slowed. His eyes cascaded down the page to his monthly balance at the bottom: $1,690. Chesapeake Energy, the company that drilled his wells, was withholding almost 90 percent of Feusner’s share of the income to cover unspecified “gathering” expenses and it wasn’t explaining why. “They said you’re going to be a millionaire in a couple of years, but none of that has happened,” Feusner said. “I guess we’re expected to just take whatever they want to give us.” Read more at http://www.philly.com/philly/business/Frackers_.html#935ifoRFaP2GShjr.99

Doesn't he have a contract? Take them to court if he's not getting paid what the contract says he should. I don't see a problem here with the overall process or business model. The other thing - we already have a natural gas pipeline running through the area that supplies alot of homes, electric utilities and factories. According to Kinder Morgan over 60% of the gas going through the current pipeline is fracked gas. Why aren't the nutcases out there marching to shut down the current pipeline? Thats almost all fracked gas too? If they did, the average person would be able to clearly see what nutcases they really are.

Well, it's nice to find a pol in this state that actually recognizes the breadth of the problem. I'm not happy with a pipeline coming through our area, but (as a long time employee in the energy industry) I recognize that a larger problem is our future energy needs. Unfortunately, wind and solar are cost prohibitive for the reasonable future - http://www.economist.com/news/finance-and-economics/21608646-wind-and-solar-power-are-even-more-expensive-commonly-thought-sun-wind-and - this article shows how much. Whiel the MA economy has recovered better than the national average, if we don't fix this energy shortfall, it will come tumbling down in just a few short years...

In addition to everything else, a href="http://wolfstreet.com/2014/07/30/how-fracking-is-blowing-up-balance-sheets-of-oil-and-gas-companies/"fracking is a money-loser.a The financial hype around fracking...[has] had Wall Street frothing at the mouth...the boundless stream of money has been searching for a place to go, and it went to an economic activity – fracking – where money goes to die. What’s left is debt, and...gas wells, that will never produce enough to pay off the debt that was incurred to drill them.

Not true - I am making a great return on my FRAK investment and the direct investment AMLP which has as its largest holding Kinder Morgan. I've made a 15% return in the past 6 months. Getting to this middle east crisis - the real people who have blood on their hands for killing these kids are the radical environmentalists in America who are stopping us from being energy independent. Instead we rely on oil from dangerous parts of the world like the middle east. We need alot more nuclear, fraked oil and gas and offshore oil wells. And clean coal. Becasue the radical enviro nazis are against all of this they are the cultprits for the killing going on in the middle east. They have the blood on their hands not the Israelis. Its the radical far left environmentalists who are to blame for the horrible economy (the market may have started is final collapse today - down 300 points). Lets see how you are all feeling when we are in a global depression.

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