A group of environmentalists gathered on the State House steps Tuesday to voice their staunch opposition to the PennEast Pipeline project.

(Sergiy Serdyuk, ThinkStock)

The PennEast Pipeline Company LLC submitted its application on Sept. 24 with Federal Energy Regulatory Commission for a permit to build of the proposed PennEast Pipeline.

“We’re here today to make sure that we can all get together to fight and stop this pipeline. No pipeline, no way,” proclaimed Jeff Tittel, NJ Sierra Club director. “This is a pipeline from Luzerne County in Pennsylvania that’s going to dead end into a compressor station in Ewing, NJ. In that path - and I say a path of destruction, that pipeline will cut through more than 88 major streams and thousands of tributaries.”

If the project is approved the underground natural gas pipeline would deliver about 1 billion cubic feet of natural gas per day. PennEast said this would help cut energy costs and boost the economy. Pending approval, PennEast expected to start construction in 2017.

On the day the permit application was submitted, Peter Terranova, chairman of the PennEast Pipeline board of managers issued a press release and extolled the virtues of the project.

“The PennEast Pipeline Project is set to deliver reduced energy costs to residents and businesses, thousands of good jobs, and a cleaner environment by cultivating clean-burning American energy,” wrote Terranova.

Environmentalists who protested Tuesday disagreed with Terranova and said the pipeline would also present a safety hazard.

“They don’t care about our environment, about our communities, about our kids, about our families, about our creeks, our rivers, our forests and our farmlands,” said Maya van Rossum, the Delaware Riverkeeper.

PennEast called the application the next critical step in offering eastern Pennsylvania and New Jersey energy consumers the environmental and economic benefits of abundant and locally produced natural gas.

“There is only one truly responsible decision that federal and state regulators can make and that is to deny the PennEast Pipeline,” said Assemblywoman Elizabeth Muoio (D-Trenton) who co-sponsors a resolution (AR-225) opposing the pipeline and urging FERC to reject the project.

Kevin McArdle has covered the State House for New Jersey 101.5 news since 2002. Contact him at kevin.mcardle@townsquaremedia.com. Follow him on twitter at @kevinmcardle1.