Boston protesters rally against gas pipeline

BOSTON – Opponents of expanding a natural gas pipeline through northwestern Massachusetts rallied on Boston Common on Wednesday, asking Gov. Deval Patrick to rescind his support for a new tax on New Englanders’ electricity bills to help subsidize it. The protest, attended by hundreds of supporters, was the culmination of a month-long “rolling rally” that marched through towns likely impacted by the proposed 250-mile long pipeline expansion in Berkshire, Worcester and Franklin counties.

Jim Cutler, an Ashfield resident, said the pipeline would potentially cut a 100-foot swath through his property, including a tree where his mother’s ashes lay. “All this for gas I do not want or do not need,” he said.

Organizers, who later marched to the State House to deliver a petition to the governor, said the proposed electric ratepayer tax was “unprecedented” for natural gas projects.