MassDEP Chapter 91 Waterways License - Public Comment Through 4/19/2016

Monday night was the MassDEP public hearing for the Chapter 91 Waterways License for the Atlantic Bridge Project from Spectra Energy.  The meeting lasted just over 4 hours and numerous residents from Weymouth, Quincy, Hingham and Braintree spoke out against the issuing of a waterways license from MassDEP.  Not a single person stood up and spoke in favor of the project.  

Read more about the evening here:

If you are interested in submitting comments, MassDEP said your comments can be of any concern but keep in mind this is a Chapter 91 Waterways license. A brief overview of the Chapter 91 process and guidelines can be found here:

Please note that the written public comment deadline has been extended to April 19, 2016.

Please reference Waterways License Application Number W16-4600

Written comments can be emailed to:

Written Comments can be mailed to:
Frank Taormina
MassDEP Waterways Regulation Program
1 Winter Street - 5th Floor
Boston, MA 02108


MassDEP stated that they were considered ancillary dependent on the waterfront - which makes no sense since every other compressor station on the Algonquin pipeline is landlocked.  Additionally, 4 of the alternate sites for the compressor are also landlocked.  

If you read the MassDEP's frequently asked questions (HERE), you will see that a compressor station should not be considered water dependent by any means.


What is the difference between water-dependent and nonwater-dependent uses?

A water-dependent use is one that requires direct access to the water to occur. Examples include boat landings, piers, wharves, boathouses, docks, revetments, floats and seawalls. A nonwater-dependent use does not require water for the structure or use to exist. For instance, restaurants, residences, parking lots, gas stations, hotels and commercial/retail outlets do not need to be located on the water.

Why is my application classified as "nonwater-dependent?"

If any part of a project or use site, no matter how small, is considered nonwater-dependent then the entire site is considered nonwater-dependent. For example, if a single family home located on the water has a small dock, which would generally be considered water-dependent, then the entire property is considered nonwater-dependent.


Please consider making a public written comment.  It's very easy to email these days and free.  Please feel free to reach out if you have any questions.