BREAKING: Maryland Rejects Fracked Gas Pipeline Easement

Board of Public Works Unanimously Deals Potomac Pipeline Unexpected Setback

Doug Jackson, 202.495.3045 or

ANNAPOLIS, MD -- Today, the Maryland Board of Public Works (Board) voted 3-0 to deny a crucial easement to the fracked gas Potomac Pipeline. The unanimous decision is a major and unexpected setback to TransCanada’s project.

TransCanada was seeking an easement under the Western Maryland Rail Trail to build part of the proposed pipeline. The pipeline was planned to run under the Potomac River, a drinking water source for about 6 million people. At a December 19th hearing, the Board postponed a decision on the application following overwhelming opposition to the project and by January 1, 2019, 63 Maryland legislators had added their names to a letter urging the Board to deny the easement.

Maryland banned fracking in April of 2017 and the tide has been turning against fracked gas projects nationwide.

In response, Sierra Club Maryland Chapter Director Josh Tulkin released the following statement:

"Marylanders and many of their leaders have consistently opposed the threats fracked gas pipelines pose to our health, water, climate, and communities. There is no right way to build these dirty, dangerous pipelines and today’s unanimous rejection of Potomac Pipeline reflects that. We shouldn’t be deepening our dependence on dirty fuels like coal, oil, and gas at a time when clean, renewable energy is abundant and affordable and the polluting corporations behind these fracked gas pipelines should wake up and realize that.”

Brooke Harper, Maryland Director of the Chesapeake Climate Action Network, stated:

“For two years, Maryland has been calling on Governor Hogan to keep his promise and protect Marylanders from the harms of fracking. Today, he took a step in the right direction by rejecting a permit for a dangerous fracked-gas pipeline proposed by TransCanada. Hopefully, this signals a reversal of the governor’s prior policy of promoting fracked gas consumption and pipelines in Maryland.”

About the Sierra Club

The Sierra Club is America’s largest and most influential grassroots environmental organization, with more than 3 million members and supporters. In addition to helping people from all backgrounds explore nature and our outdoor heritage, the Sierra Club works to promote clean energy, safeguard the health of our communities, protect wildlife, and preserve our remaining wild places through grassroots activism, public education, lobbying, and legal action. For more information, visit