COMPRESSOR Act would prevent the operation of the Weymouth compressor station and similar natural gas projects
Washington (April 2, 2021) – Massachusetts Senators Edward J. Markey and Elizabeth Warren today announced the reintroduction of the Community Outreach, Maintenance, and Preservation by Restricting Export Stations from Subverting Our Regulations (COMPRESSOR) Act, legislation that would block the placement into service or operation of any natural gas compressor station that would be built as part of a pipeline project meant to export natural gas. This bill would ban the operation of the controversial compressor station in Weymouth, Massachusetts, which was constructed to facilitate the distribution of natural gas through Massachusetts and export it to Canada.
“Last year’s unplanned gas releases highlighted the direct threat that the Weymouth compressor station poses to public safety, yet the surrounding community's concerns have gone unheard,” said Senator Markey. “This hazardous project forces residents to sacrifice their health and safety so there can be a throughway for foreign gas markets. The COMPRESSOR Act would put an immediate stop to these health risks and ensure that dangerous and unnecessary fossil fuel projects aren’t forced upon our communities.”
“Major gas projects like the Weymouth compressor station increase our reliance on fossil fuels while ignoring the concerns of households and families who are most affected,” said Senator Warren. “I am glad to reintroduce this legislation to help ensure that the health and safety of residents in Weymouth, the South Shore, and across the Commonwealth are not jeopardized just so that gas companies like Enbridge can line their pockets by exporting natural gas overseas.”
A copy of the COMPRESSOR Act can be found HERE.
The Weymouth compressor station sits in a densely populated residential area on the South Shore of Massachusetts and poses a grave risk to the health and safety of Weymouth residents and surrounding communities.  On January 22, 2021, the Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration (PHMSA) allowed the Weymouth compressor station to resume operations following an investigation into unplanned gas releases that caused the site to deploy two emergency shutdowns in September 2020.  After the emergency shutdowns, Congressman Stephen Lynch (MA-08) and Senators Markey and Warren wrote letters to Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) demanding it revoke the certificate of approval for the Weymouth compressor station due to the public safety threat of the site.
Last month, the majority of FERC commissioners noted the project's serious environmental justice, health, and safety concerns. The Commission is now reexamining the project.
On February 22, 2021, Congressman Lynch and Senators Markey and Warren again wrote to FERC, urging the expeditious approval of the rehearing request for the in-service authorization issued for the Weymouth compressor station.