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Jersey City Mayor Calls Gas Pipeline Proposal ‘Terribly Dangerous’

The Jersey City skyline is seen from New York, NY - Apr 29, 2007 - Photo: Evan Bindelglass / WCBS 880

The Jersey City skyline is seen from New York, NY – Apr 29, 2007 – Photo: Evan Bindelglass / WCBS 880

JERSEY CITY, N.J. (1010 WINS) — Not in my back yard.

That is the reaction of many elected officials, activists, safety advocates and state agencies to a proposed natural gas pipeline that Spectra Energy Corp. wants to build.

1010 WINS’ Steve Sandberg Hears From The Jersey City Mayor

However, the opposition to the 15.5-mile pipeline that would run from Staten Island through Bayonne, Jersey City, and Hoboken, before the gas is shipped under the Hudson River into the West Village, is more than just a knee-jerk reaction.

Jersey City Mayor Jerramiah Healy, along with Jersey City OEM Director Greg Kierce, was sounding the alarm Tuesday because of concerns of the proposal’s proximity to schools, hospitals, PATH trains, the Holland Tunnel and other infrastructure.

“This is terribly destructive to our city, terribly dangerous,” Healy told reporters, including 1010 WINS’ Steve Sandberg at a news conference.

Kierce said he was also worried about a worst-case scenario if something were to go wrong.

“The potential loss of life, serious injuries and damages to property and critical infrastructure as a result of a breach, would have catastrophic events,” he said.

In a statement, Spectra Energy said that it is “committed to building one of the safest natural gas pipelines in the country and have demonstrated that by the numerous safety enhancements we have made that exceed federal requirements.”

“Our goal continues to be an open dialogue with Mayor Healy and other local officials to ensure public safety, create jobs and deliver affordable, clean and domestic natural gas to New Jersey and New York,” the statement read.

Healy, however, believes officials are choosing to put hundreds of thousands of people at risk if they move forward with the proposal. He said he has been told that building the pipeline entirely under the Hudson would just be too expensive.

“It’s really about the safety of our citizens,” Healy said while urging federal regulators to step in.

Opponents have also expressed concern about the excavation of earth and presence of construction equipment that could cause environmental damage.

Gov. Chris Christie has also previously stated that he has serious objections to the proposal.

Spectra, meanwhile, maintains that the proposal is safe and that any impact on the environment would only be temporary.

What are your thoughts on the proposed pipeline?  Share your thoughts in the comments section…