Berkshire Environmental Action Team, Inc. v. Tennessee Gas Pipeline Co., No. 16-2100 (1st Cir. 2017)Annotate this Case
The Federal Energy Regulatory Commission issued to Tennessee Gas Pipeline Company, LLC a certificate of public convenience and necessity for a proposed project. The certificate was subject to filing of proof that Tennessee Gas received all applicable authorizations required under federal law. Tennessee Gas subsequently received from the Massachusetts Department of Environmental Protection (MassDEP) conditional certification for its proposed project. Petitioners filed a notice of claim for adjudicatory hearing to appeal the conditional certification. Tennessee Gas opposed the request for a hearing, arguing that once the agency had issued a conditional water quality certification, any further review must be pursued through a petition to the First Circuit. Tennessee Gas then filed suit in the District of Massachusetts seeking to bar MassDEP from engaging in further review. Petitioners filed this petition to preserve review of the conditional certification but asked the Court to reject their petition on the grounds that the Court’s review was premature until MassDEP completed its adjudicatory process. The First Circuit dismissed the petition for lack of subject matter jurisdiction because there was no order or action of MassDEP in connection with Tennessee Gas’s application for a water quality certification that the Court could review under 15 U.S.C. 717r(d)(1).
The court issued a subsequent related opinion or order on March 20, 2017.