The Delaware County Council is not proceeding with a risk assessment study on the Mariner East pipeline after finding themselves deadlocked late last week. With two votes on either side of the issue, the risk assessment, which was initially meant to be a look at all pipeline routes in Delaware County, but ultimately shifted to be narrowly focused exclusively on Mariner East, will not advance.
County Councilman Colleen Morrone, who voted against approving the study, stated: “My concern … is that this proposal that is now in front of us has significantly changed from the scope of the RFP that we approved for release. I feel my responsibility is to represent all of the residents in Delaware County. It’s about doing the right thing for all of the residents in Delaware County.”
Councilman Morrone’s vote is certainly in the best interest of not just the residents of Delaware County, but Pennsylvanians at large. Advancing a risk assessment that the Public Utility Commission has already stated likely violates Pennsylvania law would be not just illegal, but also duplicative and costly. The existing regulatory system has proven successful at every juncture of the process and can be trusted to catch any potential problems that could arise. Further, the cost burden of this unnecessary duplication would fall on taxpayers. Instead of further stalling this economically beneficial project, people should encourage efficient construction so that the project can be completed in a safe and timely manner.