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Groups against pipelines gather in Albany

May 14, 2019 8:15 am
Larry Rulison is reporting for the Times Union environmental activists looking to eliminate the use of fossil fuels like natural gas to heat homes assembled in Albany May 13, calling on Gov. Andrew Cuomo to block the expansion of the Williams Cos. gas pipeline into New York City, as well as a new National Grid pipeline bringing gas into Rensselaer County. The groups gathered outside of the Albany Capital Center as National Grid hosted a conference inside, dedicated to the company's own program aimed at reducing greenhouse emissions by 2050. Protesters said as long as National Grid's plan for the future included fracked gas pipelines, they could not support their effort. Lee Ziesche, a community organizer for the Sane Energy Project, said the state was at a "crossroads" in its energy policy regarding fossil fuels. "We are either going down the path of 100 percent renewable energy or we are going to be spending billions of dollars going in the wrong direction building out fracked-gas infrastructure," Ziesche said. Locally, National Grid is planning a $70 million expansion of its local gas transmission network. Known as the Albany Loop project, the new seven-mile line would run from Bethlehem to North Greenbush under the Hudson River. The Albany Loop project is currently under review by the state Public Service Commission. Read the full story in the Times Union.