- Associated Press - Thursday, October 27, 2016

HARTFORD, Conn. (AP) - Connecticut energy officials are abandoning a review of pipeline proposals to bring more natural gas into the state and the region.

A spokesman for the Department of Energy and Environmental Protection, Dennis Schain, said the decision was based on rulings in Massachusetts and New Hampshire that would have prevented the cost of upgrading pipelines from being passed along to ratepayers. He said it does not make sense to continue with regional projects if costs cannot be shared among states.

The state had been looking at seven proposals from bidders as it pursued more pipeline capacity.

Energy industry experts have warned that New England’s limited natural gas pipeline capacity will limit the ability to meet growing demand.

Schain said the decision does not affect the expansion of natural gas to Connecticut homes and businesses, and the state is continuing an effort to encourage increased use of natural gas.

Eversource, a utility involved in a pipeline proposal known as Access Northeast, said the company is disappointed by the decision to cancel consideration of the natural gas projects.

“We remain committed to the Access Northeast project and finding solutions for New England’s energy crisis. The significant need for natural gas in our region cannot be understated,” Eversource said in a statement.

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