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Public Open Houses Begin This Week On Potential Gas Line Project

/ The Upper Cumberland's News Leader
Public Open Houses Begin This Week On Potential Gas Line Project

Public open houses to inform residents about a potential gas line expansion through the Upper Cumberland begin this week.

TVA and the natural gas company Enbridge Gas are planning a 117-mile pipeline expansion that would cut through the region. Enbridge Stakeholder Engagement Manager Art Haskins said Thursday night residents can go to Monterey High School to learn about the project.

“We also will look for public input into the process, so if there is concern about something in the local environment, concerns about road access,” Haskins said. “Whatever the local concerns are we want to know those concerns.”

Haskins said a number of tables with posters overviewing the project process and route will be on display. Haskins said project leaders will also be available to directly answer questions about right-of-ways, environmental impact and construction.

“We have specialist in everything from cultural resources to habitats as well as just our routing,” Haskins said. “Like our lands and right-of-way group that manages things like road crossings.”

Those interested can learn more from 6:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m. at Monterey High School. A second public open house is scheduled at Jackson County High School on June 29th from 6:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m. Haskins said the opportunities are required as a part of the federal process.

“We’re very early in this process,” Haskins said. “TVA announced and then we followed directly about a year ago. Last June it was announced, so we are just moving into the initial pre-file process with our regulator. We’re holding these information meetings, and then, FERC will come back and host a scoping meeting.”

The natural gas line would run through Fentress, Jackson, Overton, and Putnam Counties following along the already-established East Tennessee Natural Gas System. Haskins said the project is dependent on TVA’s replacement decision of a coal plant in Kingston.

“They are looking to retire the existing fossil plant in Kingston, and one of the replacement options would be to replace it with a natural gas generation at that same location,” Haskins said. “To do that, they would need a large supply of natural gas, and for us to be able to do that, we need to put in a brand new pipeline.”

Haskins said if the project does move forward, current services should not be impact. Haskins said the plan is to receive a notice to proceed in 2025.


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