Eastern Shore Pipeline Faces Opposition and Support - WBOC-TV 16, Delmarvas News Leader, FOX 21 -

Eastern Shore Pipeline Faces Opposition and Support

Posted: Jun 19, 2018 10:32 PM Updated:

SALISBURY, Md. - The Delmarva Pipeline Company went before Maryland lawmakers earlier this year to present their plans for a 190-mile natural gas pipeline to run from Cecil County down to Accomac, Virginia. 

With a projected 2021 completion date, the company is facing some opposition from a grassroots group called "No Eastern Shore Pipeline." The group has been against the project since its conception. During a closed meeting on Tuesday, one of it's supporters, Jake Burdett explained what his concerns were about the project.  He says he doesn't believe that natural gas is a cleaner alternative to propane or oil. 

"Natural gas at the end of the day is still a fossil fuel that contributes to global warming," Burdett said. 

The Delmarva Pipeline Company says the project is an economic justice issue and would allow the area to have access to low-cost fuels.  Mark Schroeder says the project will be below ground and privately funded.  He explains that the pipeline and electricity plant proposed in Denton would cost more than a billion dollars, but would provide a lower cost to consumers.

Burdett says Maryland needs to transition to completely renewable energy sources by the year 2035. 

"I honestly don't think that we have time for this half-measure of just a 'cleaner' fossil fuel that's contributes to global warming because the Chesapeake Bay area is actually the third most at-risk area in the entire country for sea level rise, so we really don't have any more time to waste. We have to transition to 100 percent renewable economy," Burdett said. 

Schroeder says the pipeline will provide the area with a way to stabilize the grid for renewable energy sources and give a cleaner, transitional alternative while renewable energy grows in the state.  Delegate Carl Anderton agrees.  Anderton says he fully supports solar power and offshore wind, but doesn't think those energy sources are fully sustainable on their own at this point. 

"We're getting closer and there be a point where it will be, but in the meantime, when the sun goes down or the wind's not blowing we've got to be able to have a way to turn the lights on," Anderton said. 

The Delmarva Pipeline Company says it's planning to begin the permitting process in August or September.  The project remains on track for a 2021 completion date at this time. 

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