Natural Gas Pipeline Politicization: FERC vs. Consumers in NYS/CT

From MasterResource

By Robert Bradley Jr. — February 3, 2022

“[FERC] staff have determined that approval of the Project would not result in significant environmental impacts, with the exception of greenhouse gas emissions…. we are unable to come to a conclusion regarding the significance of the Project’s contribution to climate change.” (FERC, June 2021)

N.Y. utilities: FERC delays could jeopardize gas system,” read a headline earlier this week at EnergyWire, a publication of E&E News. “Two New York utility giants last week urged the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission to ‘promptly’ approve a natural gas project proposed nearly two years ago, fueling a debate over the consideration of greenhouse gas emissions against other factors.” The article continued:

Although changes to the policy statement have not been finalized, the gas industry and Republican members of the commission have accused the agency of delaying project approvals since the inquiry was reopened last February. At a virtual event earlier this month hosted by the U.S. Energy Association, for example, Amy Andryszak, president and CEO of the Interstate Natural Gas Association of America, charged that FERC’s gas reviews had “slowed significantly.”

“All of these send signals to the market that discourage domestic production of natural gas and domestic infrastructure investments,” Andryszak said during the event.

In the case of Enhancement by Compression, further “delays” by FERC could jeopardize the reliability of the New York gas system, the utility companies each said in comments.

“[This] Commission should recognize National Grid’s need to provide safe and adequate service. Given the particular facts of this proceeding — i.e., a limited compression project that is needed to reliably serve customer demand — the Commission should reject any attempt to delay issuance of the certificate,” National Grid wrote.

Background

Iroquois Gas Transmission operates a natural gas pipeline system serving New York and Connecticut from Waddington on the St. Lawrence River to Hunts Point in New York City. Back in 2019, Iroquois proposed to enhance compression to increase natural gas deliveries by 125 MMcf/d to gas-needy areas by winter 2023/24. (Further information on the project can be found here.)

Buyers and seller have agreed to the project. That should have been enough for the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) to approve the project after cursory review.

Application submitted, the project was ripe for approval in early 2021 and should be well under construction. But … Biden was elected and energy further politicized.

——————

Project sponsor Iroquois has summarized the straightforward benefits of expanding compressor capacity to increase deliveries to New York State and Connecticut by 125 MMcf/d.

New York

  • Greater supply to NYC will help alleviate the need for gas moratoriums and benefit economic development
  • Increased supply facilitates conversions from oil heat to gas heat while supplying new construction with natural gas instead of #2 fuel oil
  • Supports the intermittency of renewable energy sources

Connecticut

  • Complements the state’s zero-carbon initiatives and pursuit of off-shore wind resources
  • Reduces price volatility and lowers fuel prices for gas and electric utilities
  • Enhances electric grid reliability and resiliency with additional compression that enables fast start and quick ramping during peak periods

Mutual Benefits

  • Additional capacity with no new pipeline
  • Reduction in life cycle GHG emissions and air pollution
  • Increased property tax revenue for host communities
  • Construction jobs and boost to local economy during construction
  • Project related Community Grants

In FERC’s draft Environmental Impact Statement issued in June 2021, FERC stated:

Based on the environmental analysis in the EA and in this EIS, staff have
determined that approval of the Project would not result in significant environmental impacts, with the exception of greenhouse gas emissions.

Although we acknowledge the Project’s direct and downstream emissions would increase the atmospheric concentration of GHGs, in combination with past and future emissions from all other sources, and would contribute to climate change, we are unable to come to a conclusion regarding the significance of the Project’s contribution to climate change.

In accordance with NEPA and Commission policy, we evaluated alternatives to the Project to determine whether they would be reasonable and environmentally preferable to the proposed action. These alternatives included the no-action alternative, system alternatives, fuel alternatives, and location alternatives for the proposed new facilities. Although all of the alternatives we evaluated appear to be technically feasible, none provide a significant environmental advantage over the Project design. Therefore, we conclude that the Project, as modified by our recommendations in section E of this EIS, is the preferred alternative to meet Project objectives.

The old Federal Power Commission once hampered interstate natural gas transmission by giving standing to fuel oil and coal; FERC today is siding with anti-energy environmentalists that want less affordable, less reliable fossil fuels.

Voter-citizens will have their say come this November and beyond. The war on natural gas should be suspended. It is not a “bridge fuel” but a destination fuel that is still young in the modern energy age.

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Tom Halla
February 5, 2022 10:15 pm

Anyone who votes for the Democrats, and thus the Green Blob, deserves to freeze in the dark. Idiocy should take responsibility for itself.

andy in epsom
Reply to  Tom Halla
February 6, 2022 12:05 am

In some countries like the UK we are now seeing the truth that all political parties are the same. Now maybe people will see that the supposedly right wing major political party is just as communist as the rest.At least the US does still have true politicians that have not joined “the flock” but not many

Gerry, England
Reply to  andy in epsom
February 6, 2022 4:19 am

A hopeful article in CityAM on Thursday said that when there is a main party consensus it provides the opportunity for an alternative to arise. The author feared this might lead to a far right party coming through but then I suspect she holds the BBC-Guardian view that the Conservatives are a right wing party and not effectively Blue Labour. With millions of disenfranchised conservatives, there is a gaping area for a party to exploit and maybe, just maybe, the Farage-free UKIP can fill this void.

MarkW
Reply to  Gerry, England
February 6, 2022 7:13 am

To a full on communist, socialists are right wing.
Anything beyond socialists are scary far right wing extremists.

MarkW
Reply to  Gerry, England
February 6, 2022 7:15 am

For many years, there was a branch of Republican party that believed that the best route to power was to be slightly less liberal than the Democrats.
That way, the believed, everybody who was more conservative then they were, had no choice but to vote for the Republicans. Thus, every time the Democrats lurched to the left, the Republicans followed.

Even in the US, there is no truly conservative party.

MR1656
Reply to  MarkW
February 6, 2022 8:22 am

Well President Trump was trying his best to “Right” the ship. His own party was working to undermine him at every turn, and still is.

Last edited 3 months ago by MR1656
Joel
Reply to  MR1656
February 6, 2022 7:14 pm

It is incorrect to call Trump a Republican. He ran as a Republican and took over their presidential nomination. They tried as hard as they could to stop him. I was frankly amazed the R party allowed that. In office they worked with the D’s to undermine him. Both parties are essentially the same. D.C. voted 19:1 for Biden.

Ed Zuiderwijk
Reply to  Tom Halla
February 6, 2022 2:57 am

Trump will be blamed, however.

Thomas Gasloli
Reply to  Tom Halla
February 6, 2022 8:32 am

Yep, NY & Conn both voted for Biden. Who was it who said “elections have consequences”?

Willem post
Reply to  Tom Halla
February 7, 2022 7:01 am

Tom,

The Democrats taking over the federal government in 2020, and the out-of-control spending, has and will cause huge damage to the US, from which it will be difficult to recover

A good example of damage is the outrageous, country-destroying, “just walk-in, anybody-from-anywhere-is-welcome” southern border, to purposely change the demographics of the US in favor of Dem/Progs

The electricity black-out problem Texas experienced, due to a cold spell a year ago, lasting just a few days, compared to FOUR years of open borders, is like a mouse to an elephant.

It is absolutely imperative to vote these incompetent, socialistic, communistic, un-American imposters out of office in November 2022

We have to:

1) Turn out EN MASSE, to offset any and all election shenanigans, perpetrated by desperate Democrats, to hold on to power, plus

2) Enough people must turn out to witness and record, on audio/video, any and all suspicious election events, AROUND THE CLOCK; give them no breathing space.

We have to:

1) Ban ballot drop boxes to reduce fraud opportunities

2) Ban universal mail-in voting to reduce fraud opportunities

3) Sanitize the registered voter lists, to eliminate counting votes of people who: 1) are dead, 2) who never existed, 3) who moved out of state, 4) who are illegal, 5) who are underage, 6) who are convicted felons, 7) who are registered, but almost never vote. Just make up a whole lot of fictitious names. and vote them as well.

4) Ban universal ballot harvesting by shady Dem/Prog operatives, at a cost of $10/ballot, and deposit the harvested ballots in unsupervised ballot drop boxes.

“Elected” Democrats would be seated, before any entity could find out what happened to have a proper court case, several months later

5) In Democrat-controlled cities “vote counting” is done primarily in Democrat-dominated vote counting centers, staffed by “trusted” Democrat operatives. 

We must insist, all “vote counting centers” be staffed with an equal number of Republican and Democrat vote counters and observers.

These are the five most egregious election system flaws, that enabled the Democrats to get “elected” in 2020, and likely in prior elections as well.

This THIRD WORLD sordidness has to end, before it will totally ruin the US

Independent
February 5, 2022 10:17 pm

I wonder if when we’ll reach a point like Europe where the leftist crazies that run the Democrat Party flip and start accepting natural gas as “green.” No signs of it yet.

Tom Abbott
Reply to  Independent
February 6, 2022 3:57 am

The good difference between Europe and the U.S. is the U.S.has individual States, and States have Rights!

So an edict from the Washington DC Swamp doesn’t necessarily mean individual States will comply with such a demand.

Democrat-controlled States can ruin themselves if they so desire, but that doesn’t mean that Republican-controlled States have to follow that path.

We can see the differences now. The Democrat-controlled areas are having a crime wave, while the Republican-controlled areas are not. Democrat-controlled States are having problems supplying themselves with electricity, and Republican-controlled States are not. Democrat-controlled States have lots of problems that Republican-controlled States do not have. That’s because Democrats live in a delusional world, and Republicans use common sense.

I’m sure glad I live in a Republican-controlled State. It makes life so much easier.

Last edited 3 months ago by Tom Abbott
MarkW
Reply to  Tom Abbott
February 6, 2022 7:17 am

Once the Democrats succeed in packing the Supreme Court, states rights will be limited to selecting a state flower and bird, but not much else.

Carlo, Monte
Reply to  MarkW
February 6, 2022 3:49 pm

The D senate majority is trouble, last week one of New Mex. senators stroked (only 49yo) and is in the hospital. Without new absentee voting rules, it is now 49-50.

Reply to  Carlo, Monte
February 7, 2022 5:36 am

Fully vaxxed too. It was a ‘point of pride’ in several tweets he sent out … of course, the vex had nothing to do with the stroke (wink wink nod nod).

Joel
Reply to  Tom Abbott
February 6, 2022 7:16 pm

In Maryland, which is Democratic mainly because of Baltimore City, we haven’t gotten crazy about energy yet,but are getting there. However, my cost per KwH for electricity fell 10% over the last 5 years. We still use mainly fossil fuel.

gringojay
February 5, 2022 11:14 pm

President’s press secretary when asked about this can only say intention is to “circle back” on it.

3B67FE5F-8241-4E70-B261-9B2E5D8835C3.jpeg
Peta of Newark
Reply to  gringojay
February 6, 2022 1:42 am

TY Gringo = Because that image is the response you’d get if you asked any of the muppets involved here to explain the GHGE without violating Entropy and the 2nd Law

Then ask them to take into account the zero emissivity of CO2 when it’s at any of the temps or pressures extant in Earth’s atmosphere – CO2 simply can not do what it’s asserted to be doing. It simply doesn’t radiate, re-radiate, down-well, up-well or any other sort of well welling.

It’s bizarre but also very sensible and does actually make really good sense.
i.e. They have scared themselves shitless about something they completely don’t understand.
And the fright factor doubles up because they’re in fear of someone/anyone asking them to explain it

CO2 has got to be just about The Most Benign Substance under the sun yet the whole of the Western World is in a blind panic over it.

what a mess

Tom Abbott
Reply to  Peta of Newark
February 6, 2022 4:16 am

“CO2 has got to be just about The Most Benign Substance under the sun yet the whole of the Western World is in a blind panic over it.”

Exactly right.

It all leads back to the climate change lies foisted on the world by Michael Mann, Phil Jones and the other Temperature Data Mannipulators who have spawned this delusion that CO2 is dangerous.

Without the Hockey Stick lie, the alarmists would have nothing to point to as “proof that CO2 causes measureable warming of the Earth’s atmosphere. They have one bit of “evidence” and it’s a Big Lie made up out of whole cloth in their computers. Their temperature profile is a figment of their imaginations and does not represent reality.

Here’s a little tidbit showing the conspiracy between Phil Jones and others to bastardize and change the historic temperature record to make it look like CO2 is causing unprecedented warming.

“RAH… Here’s what Wigley wrote to Phil Jones about “correcting” SSTs…

At 06:25 28/09/2009, Tom Wigley wrote:

“Phil, Here are some speculations on correcting SSTs to partly explain the 1940s warming blip. If you look at the attached plot you will see that the land also shows the 1940s blip (as I’m sure you know). So, if we could reduce the ocean blip by, say, 0.15 degC, then this would be significant for the global mean — but we’d still have to explain the land blip.”

The “blip” in the late 1930s was a positive northern hemisphere anomaly of 0.6°C. Look at Figure A.6 from the 1975 NAS report “Understanding Climatic Change”: A program for action.”

The reason the “blip” was a problem was because these dishonest people wanted to make the temperature record appear to be at its warmest point today, and they would blame this unprecedented warmth on CO2.

But they could not claim there was unprecedented warming today, if it was just as warm in the Early Twentieth Century as it is today, which would mean CO2 has had little effect on temperatures since then, so they conspired to cool the Early Twentieth Century in their computers until that period was cooler than today and then they could claim unprecedented warming.

And that’s what they did, and they have used this dishonest Hockey Stick “hotter and hotter” temperature profile to scare the world and cause politicians to do really stupid things in an effort to fix CO2.

Here’s a quote from the quote: “Wrigley: If you look at the attached plot you will see that the land also shows the 1940s blip (as I’m sure you know).”

Yes, Phil Jones knew good and well that there was a 1940’s “blip” as did every other climate scientist, including Michael Mann, yet these dishonest people completely erased it and turned it into insignificance in their computers in order to sell the lie that CO2 is overheating the world. They knew the truth and deliberately lied about it to the world.

Think of all the misery these liars have caused and will cause. These people are criminals and should receive what criminals receive.

Last edited 3 months ago by Tom Abbott
Barnes Moore
Reply to  Peta of Newark
February 6, 2022 5:19 am

I don’t begin to have the knowledge you do, but I would not call it benign, I would call it essential because without it, everything on this planet dies, and if you want a greener world, you want more of it, not less. As George Orwell stated “There are some ideas so absurd that only an intellectual could believe them, no ordinary man could be such a fool.” AGW is such an idea, only I would amend the quote to say “pseudo intellectual” given that so many on the left only think they have any intelligence.

mkelly
Reply to  Peta of Newark
February 6, 2022 9:54 am

PETA, attached is a table of specific heats for some gases. Please note that there is only one column for energy required. If IR caused air or CO2 to warm there should be a second one for when IR present. The photo is from my thermodynamics book.

1D60E91D-FF3A-45CD-8AA5-059B59A39B1B.jpeg
Reply to  mkelly
February 6, 2022 5:08 pm

re: “If IR caused air or CO2 to warm”

Its not so much ‘causing it to warm’ as it slows down the radiative exit from the surface … the field of IR spectroscopy may yield some insight into this … Hey! But what do I know besides EM wave theory (Maxwell) and RF in general …

February 6, 2022 1:43 am

we are unable to come to a conclusion regarding the significance of the Project’s contribution to climate change

Then start by assuming that there is no effect.

Janice Moore
Reply to  Philip Mulholland
February 6, 2022 12:26 pm

Exactly. The burden of proof is on the human CO2 hustlers. Always has been.

To date: not one piece of evidence produced to establish their claim.

Tom Abbott
February 6, 2022 3:45 am

From the article: “Although we acknowledge the Project’s direct and downstream emissions would increase the atmospheric concentration of GHGs, in combination with past and future emissions from all other sources, and would contribute to climate change,”

They don’t know that. They are sitting there lying. They have no idea what CO2 does or does not contribute to “climate change”.

Our whole Western world is being directed using unsubstantiated assumptions about CO2 and the Earth’s atmosphere. Idiocracy. Dangerous Idiocracy.

It looks like the political alarmists have done enough damage to be visible to the public. Will the Public roll over, or demand Changes? Let’s hope the good people of Canada can be our guide. True-Dope was going to send in the troops to break up the demonstration. That’s a dictator’s first instinct. But True-Dope wised up and figured out that was a bad idea. Now he’s in hiding and the people are still demonstrating.

The politicians are not getting the job done. It’s time for the People to rise up and do it for them by voting them out, and hounding them out of office, and replacing the fools with someone with some common sense. We have to assume there are still some of those around.

We know there is at least one guy who has the required common sense.

February 6, 2022 5:35 am

And ppl wonder why Texas wants NO PART in the federal regulation of our energy sector … I hope ‘stories’ like this helps clear up why Texas wants to retain its independence on this kind of thing.

Last edited 3 months ago by _Jim
czechlist
Reply to  _Jim
February 6, 2022 9:52 am

A major reason we Texans suffered through last February is the late snake oilman T Boone Pickens who sold too many pols on wind. Then he built huge wind farms in West Texas and the Panhandle and got even richer. Of course NIMBY wouldn’t have any of those “ugly things” on his own land.

Reply to  czechlist
February 6, 2022 6:08 pm

Natural gas wellheads keep freezing up in these unusually cold cold-wx events too! Methanol injection helps, but not every wellhead is not set up for it. Trace moisture in the gas is the culprit. There is so little call for Methanol injection, once every 10 years thereabouts when these near-zero deg F events occur in North Central Texas …

Last edited 3 months ago by _Jim
2hotel9
February 6, 2022 6:40 am

Well, since they were trying to “answer” an irrelevant and stupid question they should return our tax dollars to us and crawl back under whatever slime covered rock the slithered out from under..

bonbon
February 6, 2022 6:53 am

The D.C. Bunglers are really having a tantrum – in the EU as well. There they froth ‘Russia’ not just CO2, while they divert U.S. LNG to ‘help’ . Who needs ‘help’ from obvious psychopaths?
Trust U$ !

MarkW
February 6, 2022 7:11 am

If they don’t permit the natural gas pipeline, new houses will have to be heated with electricity.
Since electricity is produced mostly using a combination of coal and natural gas, and since modern furnaces are up to 95% efficient while the best natural gas power plant is in the 80% efficient range.

Forcing homes to switch to electricity will actually increase the amount of CO2 being generated.

Not that generating more CO2 is a bad thing.

Andy Pattullo
February 6, 2022 9:41 am

Vote for clowns and every day your life is a circus. Cold? hungry? sitting in the dark?, unable to travel? poorer than last year? remember this next fall at midterms.

Paul Johnson
February 6, 2022 9:44 am

To paraphrase a meme from the 70’s: Let the Bureaucrats Freeze in the Dark.

dmacleo
February 6, 2022 2:00 pm

meanwhile due to biden policies we are no longer net exporter of energy and have had double our imports from opec and…get this…RUSSIA…

February 6, 2022 2:01 pm

Great piece, Rob.

Then, there is the matter that Harlem and north NYC are still using #2 oil.

When will New York stop pretending that they are cleaning the air both inside and outside of the dwellings in the communities of Harlem plus?

Both, Jessie Jackson and Al Sharpton have campaigned for fracking in New York and bringing the gathered NG to Harlem in the deal.

They might good Allie’s for both the Utilities. Just saying.

DCE
February 7, 2022 6:40 am

Now if we could only get the clueless and watermelon environmentalists to allow a new natural gas pipeline into New England. During the winter the existing pipeline doesn’t even come close to providing the gas needed for heating and power generation. A lot of the natural gas has to be brought in by LNG tankers carrying natural gas from places like Yemen and Russia. We still get the natural gas, but at prices much higher than if we had the new pipeline.

Boris
Reply to  DCE
February 7, 2022 1:15 pm

When the LNG companies tried to install a new off loading port on the Eastern Seaboard they met with a very large NIMBY push back from its residents. Irving Energy went ahead and built an off loading facility at their St.John New Brunswick refinery to supply their refinery with fuel and the Northeast Maritime Pipeline. That pipeline supplies Maine and the Boston area with gas.
It is a good thing Irving went and built that facility with little input and review by any government because when Trudeau attained power in 2015 he and Gerald Butts passed a moratorium on drilling in the Sable gas field. That shutdown the natural supply of gas to this pipeline and Irving’s LNG plant is the only supply now.

DCE
Reply to  Boris
February 8, 2022 7:17 am

The Everett LNG port in Boston is pretty much at capacity. It would be better if the incoming LNG was from US sources, but that damnable Jones Act will keep that from happening, so the only LNG allowed in is foreign LNG.

The real cure would be a new pipeline between Pennsylvania and Massachusetts.

Boris
Reply to  DCE
February 8, 2022 2:52 pm

Andrew Como Vetoed the Columbia Pipeline river crossing of the Albany River a number of years ago. Columbia was trying to reach the upper New York area between New York city and Boston to alleviate the bottle neck in existing pipelines from the switching of coal fired plants to natural gas. That proposed pipeline was coming from the Columbia Hub just north east of Nashville Tennessee and just south of the Kentucky border. It would have been new 48″ loop line that would have been able to continue to supply the users in that area for years to come.
At the same time the governor of New Jersey vetoed a new lateral pipeline expansion that would have supplied the City of New York and New Jersey coastal area.
It is almost like these left leaning politicians are following the same play book or something.

Jeff Corbin
February 7, 2022 6:42 am

Time to do a deep dive on FERC and if there is side-ways money. Climate change and it’s political impetus is not just an ideology or political movement, it is big business… not just politics… it gets leveraged. The question: Is the FERC leveraged? If so, by whom. Most businessmen and politicians who truly care about their state and it’s energy infrastructure will kick-A to advance it because without it their economic clock will be cleaned locally and globally. Globalism isn’t international egalitarian/socialism, it’s all about leveraging markets and advancing a massive global consumerism fed by emerging manufacturing behemoths,(central Asia, Eastern Europe including Russia etc). New York has a ton of shale gas… there is no reason they can’t become a global manufacturing behemoth from Buffalo to Binghamton to Ithaca…..but they won’t because the Dems want to hold their votes captive in the urban areas….. how lame is that?

Boris
February 7, 2022 11:27 am

Since the closure of the SABLE Gas project by Trudeau in 2015. He and his side kick Gerald Butts passed a moratorium on drilling in this off shore gas field so as a result Sable had to shutdown when their producing wells were run dry.
Western Canada supplies the TransCanada pipeline with gas but since 2015 there has been little investment in these gas fields because of the same two clowns imposing new regulations and red tape so all investment has dried up in the fossil fuel industry in Western Canada.
The cancelling of Keystone Excel was just another nail in that resource industry for investors. So I ask even if they make the necessary upgrades to the Iroquois Gas pipeline. Where are they going to get the additional gas from to supply it?

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