A York-based law firm will host a public meeting to discuss legal options available to Adams County residents living near the proposed route of a natural gas pipeline.

The pipeline, capable of transporting enough natural gas to fuel eight million homes a day, has been delayed because of plummeting natural gas prices. Now officials with the Williams Partners L.P., based in Tulsa, Okla., say the pipeline won't be in operation for another three years.

Still, the law firm Stock and Leader received calls from area residents concerned about the impact of such a project, according to attorney Jody Anderson Leighty.

"We were getting enough calls that we thought there are a lot of folks out there that don't know what to do," Leighty said. "It's really about educating folks so they know about what their options are going to be when this pipeline comes through."

The law firm is not affiliated with the Williams Partners L.P

"We don't have any kind of relationship with them to get any kind of inside scoop," Leighty said.

The proposed pipeline would carry gas obtained by the drilling process known as hydraulic fracturing, or fracking. The gas would travel from existing wells in West Virginia and the Pittsburgh area to be distributed to East Coast cities, possibly Baltimore, New York and Philadelphia.

One scenario has the Adams County section of the pipeline running through Franklin and Cumberland townships, passing north of Gettysburg, then though Straban and Mount Pleasant townships. It would continue south of New Oxford and north of Hanover into York County before reaching a compressor station in Peach Bottom Township in southeastern York County.

Most people living in the proposed path have already been notified by Williams Partners L.P. A company spokesman said about 2,500 landowners living in a 400-foot corridor where the pipeline would be located have been told of the delays.

Company spokesman Chris Stockton also said that he was surprised to hear of the Stock and Leader meeting.

"I'm not sure what their agenda is," Stockton said. "We would prefer people deal with us directly to make sure they're getting factual information that's not coming from a third party."

The Williams Partners L.P. is planning more than one public meeting to inform Adams County residents on the project. Because of the delays, though, such meetings won't be held for another six months.

Leighty said the meeting is about more than attracting customers to Stock and Leader.

"Your average homeowner is at a distinct disadvantage from a bargaining perspective," she explained. "Although I don't live in Adams County, I still don't want to see it be exploited."

Stock and Leader made a donation to the Southeastern Adams Volunteer Emergency Services to host the meeting at the SAVES building at 5865 Hanover Road.

The proposed pipe, between 24 and 36 inches in diameter, would transport methane gas and be buried underground. About three feet of soil, on average, would cover the top of the steel pipe. Gas within the pipeline would be transported under pressure, at about 1,000 pounds-per-square-inch, and it would travel, on average, seven miles per hour, according to the company.

Near the Peach Bottom compressor station the gas would increase in speed and rise in temperature. The gas could reach 100 degrees near the station, but it cools and slows as it moves farther away.

The Williams Partners must obtain federal approval before work can begin on the pipeline.

tprudente@eveningsun.com; 717-637-3736, ext. 163

IF YOU GO

A York law firm will hold a public meeting to discuss legal options available to Adams County residents living near the proposed route of a natural gas pipeline. The meeting will be held at 7 p.m. Thursday, May 3 at the Southeastern Adams Volunteer Emergency Services building located at 5865 Hanover Road.

For additional information contact the Stock and Leader law firm at 717-846-9800.