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Obama Pushes For High-Voltage Line To Be Built

Would put Susquehanna-Roseland project—running lines through Warren, Sussex and Morris—on an accelerated schedule.

The Obama administration announced Wednesday its support for fast-tracking the Susquehanna-Roseland project—a plan to build high-voltage power lines on towers running from Warren County through Sussex and Morris Counties.

The proposal—which has drawn criticism from environmental groups as well as several of the affected towns—would include a 145-mile long 500 kV transmission line from the Susquehanna Substation in Pennsylvania to the Roseland Substation in New Jersey, and several 500-230 kV substations in both Pennsylvania and New Jersey.

The power line proposal has been under review by the National Parks Service, as it would run through the Delaware Water Gap National Recreation Area.The Obama administration states that it's expected to be in service by spring of 2015, and cites statements from the developer than more than 2,000 jobs would be created in New Jersey and Pennsylvania

The Susquehanna-Roseland line would be one of seven to be put on an accelerated schedule, as part of an effort to create jobs and modernize the electric grid, the administration said Wednesday.

“The president wants to get America working again.  He is committed to cutting red tape and making immediate investments to put people to work modernizing our roads, bridges, airports, and energy systems,” said Nancy Sutley, chair of the Council on Environmental Quality.  “Building a smarter electric grid will create thousands of American jobs and accelerate the growth of domestic clean energy industries translating into more energy choices and cost savings for American consumers, and a more secure energy future for our country.”

The administration said the projects would serve as pilot demonstrations of streamlined federal permitting and increased cooperation at the federal, state, and tribal levels.

It says its recently formed Rapid Response Team for Transmission, comprised of nine agencies, would work to coordinate permitting, review and consultations schedules among agencies to get things moving along faster and more smoothly. It would work to resolve conflicts between agencies and keep them all on schedules.

“It’s clear the administration recognizes the importance of this transmission system upgrade that will maintain electric reliability for millions of people in our region,” Ralph LaRossa, president of PSE&G, said in a statement from his company. “Since this project was announced, we have been working closely with state and federal agencies such as the National Park Service to ensure a timely review and approval of permits that are needed before work can begin. We fully understand and support a thorough assessment. At the same time, utilities need the ability to make these critical system upgrades in a timely manner. The Rapid Response Team is a welcome addition to the federal permitting process.”

The Susquehanna-Roseland project follows an existing power line for the entire 45-mile length and would pass through 16 municipalities: Andover, Boonton Township, Byram, East Hanover, Fredon, Hardwick, Hopatcong Borough, Jefferson, Kinnelon, Montville, Newton, Parsippany, Rockaway, Roseland, Sparta and Stillwater.

The New Jersey Sierra Club—which along with other groups has challenged the need for the project, saying energy demands have dropped—. "The unnecessary Susquehanna-Roseland line will bring dirty coal power into New Jersey while cutting across our public lands.  The project is being used by PSE&G to allow for increased exports of cleaner energy produced in state to New York City, where they can charge higher rates.

"The purpose of the Susquehanna-Roseland line is to bring in dirty coal power from Pennsylvania. The president is wrong; this project is not about renewable energy and will not create long term jobs," said Jeff Tittel, director of the NJ Sierra Club. "The Susquehanna-Roseland line undermines green energy jobs as we invest in antiquated technology instead of a smart grid, energy efficiency, and demand response programs."

The Sierra club noted the National Park Service is expected to make a decision on the project until January 2013.

"This new pilot project could jeopardize the NPS environmental review and put our public lands at risk," it said in a prepared statement.

Other projects fast-tracked under the initiative announced Wednesday would be in Arizona, Colorado, Idaho, Minnesota, New Mexico, Nevada, Wyoming, Utah, Pennsylvania, Oregon, and Wisconsin.

Concerned Resident of Montville October 05, 2011 at 11:50 PM
Those who voted for this are nuts.. I guess you don't have any kids in Lazar to worry about. This is simply to much high voltage in a densely populated area. This will also bring down property value and surely will take us out of the precious "best town in nj"
Cynthia October 06, 2011 at 02:33 AM
The level of anger in our town is sad and unwarranted. And, why? It must be the economy transposed onto the people who are our elected officials, which is really not right. It would be really great if all people who posted here had a semblance of understanding before speaking about an issue. 'Those who voted'?? i hope you mean the PSE&G exec's because they're the only ones who 'voted' for this. It's an edict. Was there some special election that I missed to 'help increase radiation in the area'? Yes, our town voted for this...NOT!!! Do you think we look forward to the upheaval from the construction, the potential for real estate value loss, or the possible increase in radiation??? Let's be serious! Just who do you think would want these lines in their backyard? If you're the 'concerned resident of Montville', educate yourself, please before speaking. You're making us all look bad! It gives great insight why things just get voted down these days without any thought. FYI, this is a right of way that is owned by PSE&G. By law they can upgrade the lines and we, and other towns, had all kinds of meetings about 1.5 years ago to try to stop it but are powerless. Try doing a search for the name of the actual power line and you will find way too many articles showing settlements that were made by other towns and, I think, ours, too. Now that our terrific president is behind this (how the heck did that happen?) this will sadly be here in no time. What cave did you crawl out of?
Maxim Sapozhnikov October 06, 2011 at 12:34 PM
...but the environmentalist moonbats will vote for him anyway.
Ernie October 06, 2011 at 06:34 PM
I may be wrong but I believe the real estate value of property in those areas was already lowered because of the original power lines. If you bought there, you had a built in discount. I don't know why people are so shocked about this, big business is taking over this country and there is very little we can do about it. The people that are picketing on Wall Street are trying, but who knows what will happen.
The Watcher October 06, 2011 at 10:16 PM
PSE&G said there will be no compensation for loss of property value. With the size of the proposed towers and the voltage they will be carrying property values may decrease or become non existent. Who will want to buy a home under or near the lines? All this is being done so NYC can have more power. More power to a city that need to learn to recycle, maybe they wouldn't need the lines if they shut off some of the lights in Times Square http://stopthelines.com/concerns%20with%20project.htm
Peter Greendyk October 06, 2011 at 10:55 PM
People should take a look at the 1960's power storage area that JCPL/First Energy runs out near the Gap. There are two huge reservoirs. During the day the top reservoir empties into the bottom basin by gravity flow through a large penstock, generating extra energy to meet the daily demand in that area. At night, huge pumps send the same water back up to the top basin so the next day it can happen all over again. Here's the kicker - it takes more kilowatts to pump the water back up at night than it produces during the day - a 4:3 ratio - but it's the only way to meet demand. Our counties need this electrical grid upgrade!
The Watcher October 07, 2011 at 01:43 AM
It's more profitable to sell the energy to NYC http://stopthelines.com/concerns%20with%20project.htm
Steve in Kingston October 07, 2011 at 02:21 AM
2,000 jobs? Hahahahahahahahahahahahahahah.
Sharon Maroldi October 07, 2011 at 12:21 PM
Yes, I'm with you, 2,000 jobs? Building or maintaining? If building, that would be contractors, a short term proposition. If maintaining, why would it require that many people? Is the line powered by stationary bicycles?
Maxim Sapozhnikov October 07, 2011 at 12:35 PM
Likely the amount of lawyers required to defend JCPL against cancer lawsuits.
Beachbum October 09, 2011 at 01:26 PM
The energy created by this 'upgrade' will NOT benefit New Jersey; it will benefit NYC. Destroy our landscape and our property values and endanger our children but the benefit will be across state lines. Obama needs to learn more about this project before throwing his support. It's not just about the jobs created.
The Watcher October 09, 2011 at 03:09 PM
OMG just found this u tube of a guy hanging off the side of a helicopter fixing high voltage power lines. Guess it is true !!! http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5Ix0Gz0ABaI Maybe the mayor and council should watch this !!!
Maxim Sapozhnikov October 09, 2011 at 03:13 PM
Of course it is not about jobs created. It is about campaign contributions. With Obama, it is ALWAYS about them.
The Watcher October 09, 2011 at 10:16 PM
Reality check Max for ALL the elected officials it's about campaign contributions. That's why the country is in such sorry shape.
Maxim Sapozhnikov October 09, 2011 at 10:34 PM
That's probably why we reelect them all every two years. Right?
Ron Soussa October 09, 2011 at 10:52 PM
Better to use the funds that would extend the power line to subsidize solar energy. Solar panels on your rooftop produce electricity exactly where it is consumed, so there is no need to upgrade power lines.
The Watcher October 10, 2011 at 02:41 AM
That's why "Corporate America" gets to own the government and is allowed to get away with ripping off the taxpayers without jail time or fear of having to reimburse the taxpayers. Must be hard to investigate those who made a massive donation to your campaign. What if they were in violation of the law when they acquired their massive wealth? Would the person who received the donation have to return the money to the taxpayers? Better to turn one's head and not look at the legality issue. After all the regular taxpayer can't afford to fight corporate America in court. Money wins elections. As for "we reelect them" just look at Florida when they decided to stop counting the votes. People that were hired to "fix" the voting machines in some states testified and nothing was done. Electronics can be hacked, as evidenced by the hacking of banks and the Government computers. Not interested in Republican/Democratic bashing just interested in righting some of the wrongs perpetrated on the American people. There are many articles on the subject. http://rawstory.com/news/2008/Cybersecurity_expert_raises_allegations_of_2004_0717.html
Allison Para July 23, 2012 at 03:48 PM
Please see: http://www.change.org/petitions/pseg-bury-utility-lines-through-montville-twsp
Allison Para July 23, 2012 at 03:50 PM
Please see: http://www.change.org/petitions/pseg-bury-utility-lines-through-montville-twsp
Allison Para July 23, 2012 at 03:51 PM
Please see: http://www.change.org/petitions/pseg-bury-utility-lines-through-montville-twsp
Allison Para July 23, 2012 at 03:52 PM
Please see: http://www.change.org/petitions/pseg-bury-utility-lines-through-montville-twsp

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