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Proposed Upper Valley Pipeline May Face Roadblocks From N.H. Regulators

The New Hampshire Office of Consumer Advocate has raised questions about a proposed natural gas facility and pipeline that would go through the Upper Valley.

Late last year, Liberty Utilities announced plans to expand their franchise with a natural gas facility and pipeline which would go through Hanover and Lebanon, New Hampshire.

So far, the company has not signed any anchor companies in the Upper Valley to support the business.

That is part of why the Office of Consumer Advocate says they question the viability of the plan.

Don Kreis, the Consumer Advocate for the state of New Hampshire, represents the interests of residential utility customers. He thinks the plan is risky, without buy-in from anchor customers.

“There is too great a risk that there won't be enough customers signing up to make the project pay its own way,” he explained recently. “So therefore project costs could end up going into the rates paid by all of Liberty's costumers throughout New Hampshire,” Kreis concluded.

In September, the Public Utilities Commission will hold a hearing on the proposed project. That body will decide whether the project moves forward.

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