Millennium Pipeline Company is clearing land for a 7.8-mile pipeline project that will connect to the CPV Power Plant in Wawayanda.
Their communications director says the courts have removed the stay that had stopped them from moving forward with the project. Protesters say they've had environmental concerns from the get-go, and the land being cleared is near an active eagle's nest.
The group Protect Orange County says clearing land and building a pipeline will ruin the bird's habitat, and says the company doesn't have the legal footing to move forward. Millennium says it is following U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service guidelines for the project, clearing land at the required distance from the nest, and that the site has been monitored and that eagles are not nesting there.
Wildlife biologist Kathy Michell, who has been an eagle wildlife expert for more than 20 years, says she has not seen any signs the nest is occupied, like droppings or food remains like bones or shells.
"I don't doubt that some people are seeing eagles because it's possibly an occupied territory," she said. "Eagles have obviously used this nest in the past and so they maybe established a territory, but it's too early in the season for them to start any breeding or nesting activities."
Protect Orange County is calling on Governor Andrew Cuomo to stop the project.