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Spire's Natural Gas Pipeline for St. Louis, MO, USA

Spire pays for its environmentally damaging pipeline installation - in some cases - while others are still fighting for justice.


The Spire STL gas pipeline was first proposed by Spire Energy on July 1st, 2016.  On January 26, 2017, Spire STL Pipeline Company, LLC (Spire Energy) filed an application with the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) for pipeline construction. On April 21, 2017, Spire filed an amended application with an alternative route, in lieu of the purchase and modification of Laclede’s Line 880 in St. Louis County, Missouri. The pipeline connects the existing Rockies Express Pipeline in Scott County, Illinois to St. Louis County, Missouri. The pipeline extends a total of 65 miles underground.

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Basic Data
Name of conflict:Spire's Natural Gas Pipeline for St. Louis, MO, USA
Country:United States of America
State or province:Illinois and Missouri
Location of conflict:Scott County, Green County, Jersey County (IL), St. Charles and St. Louis Counties (MO)
Accuracy of locationMEDIUM (Regional level)
Source of Conflict
Type of conflict. 1st level:Fossil Fuels and Climate Justice/Energy
Type of conflict. 2nd level:Transport infrastructure networks (roads, railways, hydroways, canals and pipelines)
Specific commodities:Natural Gas
Project Details and Actors
Project details

The $287 million Saint Louis Spire natural gas project will connect the Rockies Express Pipeline to the Saint Louis Express Pipe by installing a total of 65.2 miles of steel pipes, 24-inch in diameter. The pipeline will cross over five counties of mostly agricultural land [1]. Fifty-nine miles of new-build underground pipeline will run through Illinois with the remaining six miles in Missouri which will connect to Line 880, an existing pipeline in St. Louis County, Missouri [2]. These pipelines will facilitate the transportation of 400,000 squared dekatherms of natural gas per day (Dth/d) with the operating pressure of a maximum of 1,440 pounds per square inch gauge. These pipelines will provide year-round transportation service of natural gas to markets in the St. Louis metropolitan area, eastern Missouri, and southwest Illinois [3].

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Project area:420
Level of Investment:287,000,000
Type of populationRural
Affected Population:100,000-1,000,000
Start of the conflict:01/07/2016
Company names or state enterprises:Spire Inc. from United States of America - Instigator
Relevant government actors:Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC)
IL Environmental Protection Agency
Environmental justice organizations (and other supporters) and their websites, if available:Great Rivers Environmental Law Center
Environmental Defense Fund
Conflict & Mobilization
IntensityLOW (some local organising)
Reaction stageIn REACTION to the implementation (during construction or operation)
Groups mobilizing:Farmers
International ejos
Local ejos
Local government/political parties
Local scientists/professionals
Forms of mobilization:Creation of alternative reports/knowledge
Development of alternative proposals
Involvement of national and international NGOs
Lawsuits, court cases, judicial activism
Media based activism/alternative media
Objections to the EIA
Arguments for the rights of mother nature
Environmental ImpactsVisible: Floods (river, coastal, mudflow), Soil erosion, Waste overflow, Reduced ecological / hydrological connectivity
Potential: Biodiversity loss (wildlife, agro-diversity), Fires, Global warming, Loss of landscape/aesthetic degradation, Soil contamination, Surface water pollution / Decreasing water (physico-chemical, biological) quality, Groundwater pollution or depletion, Large-scale disturbance of hydro and geological systems
Health ImpactsPotential: Accidents, Mental problems including stress, depression and suicide, Deaths
Socio-economical ImpactsVisible: Land dispossession
Potential: Loss of livelihood, Other socio-economic impacts
Project StatusUnder construction
Conflict outcome / response:Compensation
Environmental improvements, rehabilitation/restoration of area
Court decision (undecided)
Development of alternatives:The Environmental Defense Fund proposes renewable energy options to replace a fossil-fuel dependent pathway that results from pipeline development.
Do you consider this an environmental justice success? Was environmental justice served?:Not Sure
Briefly explain:There were some successful examples (increases in compensation), while other failures (losses to farmers) in this case.
Sources & Materials
Juridical relevant texts related to the conflict (laws, legislations, EIAs, etc)

[7] Environmental Assessment STL Pipeline
[click to view]

[3] Spire Pipeline EIA
[click to view]

[1] Spire Energy Website
[click to view]

[click to view]

[2] Spire Ready for In-Service on REX Lateral to Serve St. Louis Natural Gas Market
[click to view]

[4] Article a Muddy Mess
[click to view]

[click to view]

[7] Nov 8, 2017 Environmentalists, St. Louis residents aim to halt Spire's gas pipeline
[click to view]

[10] EDF sues FERC
[click to view]

[5] Telegraph article: Greene County makes headway in Spire road agreement
[click to view]

[8] Great Rivers Environmental Law Center Statement
[click to view]

Spire topographic map
[click to view]

Meta information
Contributor:Sarah Ungerleider: [email protected], Hannah Hathaway: [email protected], and Julie Snorek: [email protected]
Last update27/02/2020
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