Gas Pipeline Fight

An opposition sign on Cross Street in Rehoboth.

SEEKONK — Town residents have urged selectmen to join the battle against a proposed gas compressor station in Rehoboth.

“A lot of people think it is a Rehoboth issue,” Burnside Avenue resident Manny Botelho said. “It is not a Rehoboth issue because the air does not stop in Rehoboth.”

Botelho cited concerns about air pollution and noise if the station is allowed to operate. The comments were made during last Wednesday’s selectmen meeting.

Selectman David Viera was sympathetic to Botelho’s concerns, but acknowledged it would be a tough fight.

“We’ll do what we can to help you and the town but (the pipeline) is a federal program, Viera said. “That’s like a freight train sometimes.”

Hundreds of Rehoboth residents turned out for a forum Sept. 25 with representatives from Spectra Energy.

The Access Northeast project, in partnership with National Grid and Eversource Energy, includes 55.51 miles of new pipeline, plus additional facilities. The compression station facilitates the movement of natural gas through the pipeline.

The facility will be built in a 120-acre wooded site close to Seekonk and Attleboro.

It’s among 26 proposed projects between New York and Boston along the Algonquin natural-gas pipeline, which is owned by Spectra. The projects include the construction of a liquified natural gas storage facility in Acushnet.

The project is currently being reviewed by the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission.

If approved, construction is expected to begin in 2018.

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