"Whistleblowers and experts allege safety violations, inadequate oversight surrounding new project near Indian Point".
"BUCHANAN, N.Y. — The day before Halloween at Buchanan-Verplanck Elementary School in Westchester County, Courtney Williams watched her 5-year-old daughter participate in the school’s annual Pumpkin Olympics. As kindergartners balanced tiny gourds on wooden spoons and rolled big plastic pumpkins across the school’s lawn, the sound of heavy machinery competed with teachers for the children’s attention.
The school is just 400 feet from the path of a massive new pipeline expansion project that’s being carried out by Spectra Energy, an oil and gas infrastructure company based in Houston. The Algonquin pipeline expansion is one of at least 22 pipeline projects designed in recent years to transport natural gas from shale fields across the U.S. to distribution points in the Northeast. But the noise isn’t the only thing troubling local residents like Williams. The pipeline will run within several dozen feet of electrical infrastructure necessary to operate Indian Point, an aging nuclear plant on the Hudson River. Residents worry that if the pipeline were to rupture, it could trigger a chain of events that might end in a nuclear meltdown, devastating their communities and turning New York City into a radioactive evacuation zone.
'It will be a catastrophe,' said Williams, a cancer researcher and mother of two small children. 'With [the pipeline] 400 feet from my front door, 400 feet from my kids’ elementary school, worrying about the worst case scenario is something I do on a routine basis.'"