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Gov. Andrew Cuomo | rew Angerer/Getty Images

NY - Cuomo administration cites new climate law in denying controversial New York, New Jersey pipeline

Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s administration denied a permit for a pipeline to supply natural gas to Long Island and New York City in a landmark decision citing the state’s sweeping climate law.

The Williams Northeast Supply Enhancement pipeline, which also would need some permits in New Jersey, was proposed to run 37 miles from New Jersey across the New York Harbor to connect to the pipeline system off Long Island. The Department of Environmental Conservation said the construction of the pipeline in the ecologically sensitive, historically contaminated and recovering area — particularly near Raritan Bay — would have an unacceptable negative impact on water quality.

It’s also incompatible with the state’s goal to reduce emissions by 85 percent from 1990 levels by 2050.

“New York is not prepared to sacrifice the State’s water quality for a project that is not only environmentally harmful but also unnecessary to meet New York’s energy needs,” DEC spokesperson Erica Ringewald said in a statement announcing the decision.

National Grid has agreed to buy gas supplied over the pipeline if it is ultimately built. The utility has identified it as the most reliable option to meet the growing demand from new construction and buildings switching off oil over the next 15 years. But in a report released last week, the utility also identified a preferred alternative to the pipeline that involves trucking in more gas and upgrading an existing pipeline system.

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