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In Win for Local Families and Businesses, Supreme Court Grants Cert in PennEast Appeal of Third Circuit Ruling – 3/10/2021

Tony Cox, Chair of the Board of Managers of the PennEast Pipeline Company, released the following statement upon the Supreme Court of the United States granting the petition for certiorari in PennEast Pipeline Company LLC v New Jersey (No. 19-1039):

“Today’s decision by the U.S. Supreme Court granting the petition for certiorari in the PennEast Pipeline case is a major step forward in upholding Congress’ clear charge to the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) to ensure the availability of affordable domestic energy, delivered safely and reliably via natural gas infrastructure. Federally approved pipeline projects undergo an extensive review process, and support jobs, reliable energy systems, a cleaner environment, and lower energy bills, which together, benefit our region’s families and businesses.

“Congress passed the Natural Gas Act specifically to avoid state and local vetoes of interstate projects found by federal regulators to be in the public need and benefit. The misguided Third Circuit ruling in fall 2019 turned nearly 80 years of federal government interpretation and industry practice on their heads. In its written response before the U.S. Supreme Court last spring, the State of New Jersey even agreed that the U.S. Constitution allows the federal government to condemn state property and took issue only with whether it can delegate that authority to a private party.

“Eighteen business, labor and consumer advocacy organizations filing amicus briefs in support of the PennEast petition demonstrate the importance of reversing the Third Circuit decision. We remain hopeful that after hearing full arguments this term, the U.S. Supreme Court will agree that the Third Circuit’s decision was profoundly wrong.

“Finally, there are several factors potentially impacting the anticipated in-service date such as approval from FERC on the phased approach, approval of the remaining permit applications from Pennsylvania regulators, and construction-related considerations. At this time, we anticipate placing the Phase One facilities in service in 2022. We anticipate placing the Phase Two facilities in service in 2024, though there may be a shift to the anticipated timeline depending on a number of factors.”

“We continue to work with all regulators to move the project forward, and meet the well-established needs of our customers.”

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