Homeowners sue to stop Ohio gas pipeline construction

In this April 20, 2017 photo, a sign opposing a proposed pipeline sits in the front yard of a house in Green, Ohio. The town has hired a law firm to stop the pipeline from being built through the community. (AP Photo/Dake Kang)

AKRON, OH (AP) — More than 60 property owners in northeast Ohio are asking a federal court to block a proposed high-pressure natural gas pipeline.

Organizers of the Coalition to Reroute Nexus say a suit filed Friday in U.S. district court charges that the project violates the owners’ due process rights, misuses eminent domain to take property, and jeopardizes their safety. It seeks injunctions against the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission and Nexus Gas Transmission.

“This complaint has been a long time in development,” said Paul Gierosky, a co-founder of the group. “Our every experience in dealing with FERC and Nexus has been documented and will be brought to bear in this case.”

This Thursday, July 16, 2015 photo shows a truck passing a sign against Nexus on the property of Kathy Cikotte, in Berlin Heights, Ohio. (AP Photo/Tony Dejak)

The lawsuit contends that the federal commission and used false and misleading information designed to trick property owners into waiving their constitutional rights. It urges the court to enjoin FERC from issuing a certificate to Nexus for the pipeline.

Nexus spokesman Adam Parker said that while the company can’t comment on pending litigation, it has undergone “rigorous environmental review and has been publicly evaluated for more than two years” and that the project will meet all applicable state and federal regulations.

A message for comment was emailed to the commission.

The city of Green is also considering a lawsuit to stop the pipeline, which it says will cause economic harm and hurt environmentally fragile wetlands.

Nexus has said the pipeline will provide a new source of natural gas to businesses in Ohio and Michigan.

Nexus Gas Transmission is a partnership of Calgary, Alberta-based Enbridge and Detroit’s DTE Energy. The company wants to build 255 miles of pipeline carrying as much as 1.5 billion cubic feet (42.5 million cubic meters) of gas per day from the Utica and Marcellus shale formations in Appalachia across northern Ohio and into Michigan.

The company has told the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission some of the gas will be shipped to a trading hub and storage facility Enbridge owns in Ontario, Canada. Enbridge merged this year with Houston-based Spectra Energy, DTE’s original partner.

Pipeline opponents argue that a Canadian company like Enbridge shouldn’t be allowed to take property from U.S. landowners.

NBC4i.com provides commenting to allow for constructive discussion on the stories we cover. In order to comment here, you acknowledge you have read and agreed to our Terms of Service. Commenters who violate these terms, including use of vulgar language or racial slurs, will be banned. Please be respectful of the opinions of others and keep the conversation on topic and civil. If you see an inappropriate comment, please flag it for our moderators to review.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s