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Constitution Pipeline developers vow to fight New York permit rejection


(AP/WBNG Binghamton) Developers of the Constitution Pipeline say they'll challenge the legality of New York's rejection of a critical permit for the 124-mile conduit from Pennsylvania's shale gas fields to eastern markets.

The pipeline company said Monday that the Department of Environmental Conservation's denial letter includes ``flagrant misstatements and inaccurate allegations'' and is driven by politics.

"We believe this is an important piece of infrastructure that hasn't changed. The federal government agreed with us--this is a needed and important piece of infrastructure,” said Chris Stockton, a spokesman with Constitution Pipeline.

The DEC on Friday denied a water quality permit, saying the project fails to meet standards that protect hundreds of streams, wetlands and other water resources in its path.

The company had planned to start construction at the end of summer.

On Monday, leaders of local activist groups celebrated the decision--but also noted the fight is far from finished.

"We are going to continue to document these problems. We are going to continue to hold the governor's feet to the fire,” said Walter Hang, Toxics Targeting President. "He has to enforce the law and he has to protect the environment and public health."