Rehoboth proposed compressor station

By: News Staff

REHOBOTH, R.I. — Some Rehoboth residents are not happy after finding out an energy company wants to put a natural gas compressor station in the middle of town.

The station would be one piece of a massive project called “Access Northeast,” but Rehoboth residents are fighting back trying to stop the whole thing.

ABC6 News reached out on social media to a group of Rehoboth residents to talk about their concerns.

There were dozens of people all fearful of what may be coming to their town.

“I have two young kids and I don’t want… I’m sorry (crying),” said Gina Woodrum.

Woodrum of Rehoboth was emotional just thinking about it.

She is a cancer survivor, but is scared she will have to fight it again if Spectra Energy builds a natural gas pipeline compressor station in her town.

“The chemicals that come out of that cause cancer and I do not want to go through that again.”

Chemicals being released into the air are one of several concerns, which is why people in the quiet rural town of Rehoboth are making noise trying to stop the project.

“It’s peaceful and now somebody’s trying to shake the peace," said another Rehoboth resident; Andrew Stevens

The proposed compressor station is part of a larger project called "Access Northeast” and it would move natural gas through the pipeline spanning much of the Northeast.

“The dangers that are coming from this are something that will far outweigh any benefit and I’m having a real hard time finding the reward side of this if you look at it risk reward,” said Chris Gauthier.

This group says another risk is contaminated drinking water.

“Everybody in Rehoboth has well water. We don’t have public water. We use it for drinking, taking showers, feeding farm animals. This is a right to farm community,” said Amy O’Brien.

On top of that, there will be noise.

A group of residents took a trip to Burillville to check out the compressor station there and they were shocked when they heard just how loud the daily blowdowns are.

“During the blow downs it’s like an airplane is trying to land on your house.”

Residents and city leaders will never get a vote on the project.

All that is left is for the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission to approve it.

If they do, construction would start in 2018 and some say they will move.

“We’re already looking for homes because we’re afraid.”

There will be a town meeting Wednesday at the Blanding Public Library to discuss the compressor station.

In the meantime, residents are asking state leaders and Governor Baker for help.

©WLNE-TV / ABC6 2016