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Local News

March 19, 2014

Pipeline would send gas to Amphenol, towns

(Continued)

Approximately 1,000 workers are scheduled to begin working in the new plant in June, while Amphenol’s administrative staff will begin occupying the building in May, said Rick Aiken, the general manager for Amphenol Aerospace.

Aiken said Amphenol has occupied its current plant since 1925. The building was initially powered with coal transported from Pennsylvania. If the pipeline project is approved, he said, Pennsylvania will once again become the source of Amphenol’s power, but “it will be carried by the Constitution Pipeline instead of the railroad.”

The plant that is about to open has a 30,000-gallon propane tank sitting behind it, said Aiken, adding, “I am hoping it is very temporary.”

The annual cost saving for Amphenol from switching to natural gas has been estimated at more than $1 million, Amphenol representatives said. That will help put the company in better position to grow and protect the worker payroll it has now, they said.

The pipeline project is facing intense opposition from a grassroots group called Stop the Pipeline, whose members have showered FERC with comments protesting the transmission system and characterizing it as causing far more environmental damage than the company has acknowledged.

The resistance to the project has been particularly acute in Delaware County, where about 70 percent of the landowners whose parcels would be crossed by the pipeline have not signed agreements granting Constitution Pipeline a permanent easement to the properties in question.

FERC last month issued a draft environmental impact statement, in which the agency’s staff concluded its adverse environmental impacts could be lessened through various mitigation measures that have been prescribed.

Among the recent public comments sent to FERC in recent days was one from Mark Archambault of Masonville, expressing concern that he would be unable to obtain a mortgage for his property if the pipeline traverses his parcel. He said representatives of three banks advised him he would not be approved for a mortgage if the pipeline crosses his property.

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