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Pinelands staff recommends pipeline approval



PEMBERTON TOWNSHIP, N.J. (AP) — The staff of the New Jersey Pinelands Commission recommends that the agency approve a hotly debated plan to build a natural gas pipeline through the protected Pinelands region.

The pipeline would bring natural gas to a Cape May County power plant that’s switching from coal power.

A report released Monday says the pipeline plan meets most of the commission’s requirements. It also says the planned acquisition of publicly owned land along the pipeline route compensates for the parts that don’t fully comply.

The full Pinelands Commission is scheduled to vote Friday on the proposal.

The 22-mile natural gas pipeline would run through the Pinelands, which are protected by state and federal law.