Jump to Navigation
Jump to Content

Town of Weymouth v. Massachusetts Department of Environmental Protection

ELR Citation: 50 ELR 20140
Nos. 19-1794, (1st Cir., 06/03/2020)

The First Circuit vacated an air permit issued by the Massachusetts Department of Environmental Protection (MDEP) for a proposed natural gas compressor station that is part of a natural gas pipeline connecting the northeastern U.S. and Canada. Nearby municipalities and citizens argued that MDEP improperly excluded from its best available control technology (BACT) analysis consideration of using an electric motor instead of a natural gas-fired turbine for the station. The court found that MDEP did not follow its own established BACT protocol, which required a cost-effectiveness analysis before eliminating a technology, and thus that its decision to exclude the motor was arbitrary and capricious. It therefore vacated the permit and remanded to MDEP to redo its analysis.