Members of Congress Worry Propane Rail Shipments Could Harm Great Bay

Jul 24, 2014

  Senators Jeanne Shaheen and Kelly Ayotte along with Congresswoman Carol-Shea Porter want to take a closer look at the potential environmental impacts of propane rail traffic through the Great Bay Estuary. 

The Sea-3 proposal to bring propane by rail through the Seacoast has been controversial from the start.  This week in a letter to the Secretary of Commerce, members of New Hampshire's Congressional delegation urged NOAA, the National Oceanic Atmospheric Administration to assess the environmental impact of increased rail traffic over 13 miles of track running through the Great Bay National Estuarine Research Reserve. 

This comes two months after the Newington planning board approved the propane company Sea-3’s proposal to expand its capacity.  The city of Portsmouth is fighting Newington’s decision in court.

The Conservation Law Foundation has voiced concerns about the impact a potential propane spill could have on oyster restoration efforts, aquaculture operations, and professional and recreational shellfishing.