‘The bet is just not worth it’

| 02 Sep 2021 | 11:56

    The following is a copy of a letter sent by Passaic County Commissioner Terry Duffy to New Jersey Gov. Phil Murphy regarding the TGP Gas Compressor Station Project in West Milford:

    Dear Governor Murphy:

    I have lived in West Milford for 40 years and have served as Passaic County Commissioner since 2003. I am writing this letter because I do not believe that I can keep silent regarding the proposed construction of the TGP Compressor Station in West Milford.

    Many of my friends and neighbors have sought me out to discuss their concerns, especially because the project appears t obe “all risk and no reward.”

    Even though my fellow Passaic County Commissioners considered a resolution opposing the TGP project, they decided to take no formal stance in deference to the West Milford local government.

    Now that a deal favoring the project is being considered by the West Milford Town Council, I personally am compelled to speak out opposing the TGP project

    . I have the utmostr egard for my fellow Commissioners, but I respectfully disagree with their decision to defer to the West Milford Town Council.

    Thank God we live in a country where we can agree to disagree.

    When I mention “all risk and no reward,” I am referring to the risk of a pipeline accident that will contaminate our West Milford residents’ air and the drinking water for 3.5 million people supplied by Monksville Reservoir.

    Such accidents have occurred throughout the USA and the pipeline through West Milford is 65 years old and aging.

    Furthermore, the fracked gas it carries will not be used by West Milford but will supply the 400,000 residents in Westchester County, New York.

    Although the project includes funds for emergency responders, having a “real” person monitoring the compressor station from 9-5, five days a week followed up with technical support from Houston, Texas, doesn’t speak “optimum safety “ to me.

    The gain, $655,000, is to be applied toward annual property tax relief. That amounts roughly to a savings of $53.30 to the taxpayer.

    Another gain is that TGP will employ construction jobs for approximately 6 months, but the workers may not necessarily be from West Milford.

    Are these two gains worth the risk?

    As you drive throughout our township, have you noticed lawn signs stating, “Protect West Milford, No Fracked Gas Compressor.”

    Simply stated, fracked gas p1:oduces methane and methane is 21 times more potent than carbon dioxide (CO2) as a heat trapping gas.

    Even the most conservative people I know believe we are in the midst of a climate crisis enhanced by fossil fuels.

    It is not IF, but WHEN, toxic fossil fuel emissions will be released from the compressor station, compromising the air and water quality we highly value in our community.

    I think it’s time to say NO to the TGP gas compressor station in West Milford! Only time will tell whether or not the direction the West Milford Town Council is taking is the right one.

    I’m not a betting person, but for the sake of the 3.5 million people that rely on our Monksville Reservoir that bet is just not worth it.


    Terry Duffy

    Passaoc County Commissioner