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National Fuel asks federal appeals court to review DEC's pipeline denial

National Fuel is asking for federal appellate review of the state Department of Environmental Conservation's denial earlier this month of its proposed 97-mile Northern Access Pipeline.

The Williamsville-based company filed a petition Friday with the Second Circuit of the U.S. Court of Appeals seeking a review of the DEC's April 7 denial of its application for a water quality certificate.

The certificate, under the federal Clean Water Act, is required for construction of the estimated $455 million Northern Access pipeline project, which is designed to transport natural gas from Pennsylvania north through Allegany, Cattaraugus and Erie counties to a connection point in the town of Elma. The project also involved building a new compressor station, a dehydration facility and some new pipeline in Niagara County.

DEC denies permit for controversial National Fuel pipeline

The company didn't immediately comment on the filing today, other than to restate the terms of the regulatory filing.

It stated: "On April 21, 2017, National Fuel Gas Supply Corporation and Empire Pipeline, Inc. (collectively, "National Fuel"), both wholly-owned subsidiaries of National Fuel Gas Company, filed in the United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit a Petition for Review of the Notice of Denial by the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation dated, April 7, 2017, with respect to National Fuel's application for a water quality certification under Section 401 of the federal Clean Water Act. The application for the water quality certification was in connection with National Fuel's federally approved Northern Access 2016 pipeline project."

National Fuel calls DEC's denial of pipeline project 'troubling'

Opponents of the project, which included environmental activists and some landowners, cited concerns of impaired water and air quality.

The project would have cut through nearly 200 creeks or streams along its route.

National Fuel pipeline would cut through 192 WNY streams

DEC determined that National Fuel failed to adequately address issues affecting water quality in denying the company the necessary certificate.

Last year, DEC similarly denied the Constitution Pipeline in the eastern Southern Tier for similar reasons. That pipeline was proposed by a different gas company.

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