Judge: Shale gas pipeline can build across holdout property

Associated Press

Judge: Shale gas pipeline can build across holdout property

SCRANTON, Pa. (AP) — A federal judge says backers of a 124-mile pipeline designed to ferry cheap Marcellus Shale natural gas to New York can build across seven northeastern Pennsylvania properties whose owners had not agreed to it.

U.S. District Judge Malachy Mannion ruled Tuesday that the Constitution Pipeline had the necessary permits from the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission and that it serves the public interest.

Mannion also says the Susquehanna County landowners stood to gain adequate compensation from the pipeline's owners. Some of the defendants did not respond to the lawsuits seeking access to their land.

The company can start work after it posts a $1.6 million bond, although a spokesman says it's still seeking necessary construction permits. Its lead partners are Tulsa, Oklahoma-based Williams Partners and Houston-based Cabot Oil & Gas.

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