Pipeline Payday: How Builders Win Big, Whether More Gas Is
Needed or Not
ACP has severe economic &
Close corporate relationships between pipeline builders and gas
buyers are allowing companies to reap higher profits while locking
in emissions for years to come.
Article by Phil McKenna, Inside Climate News, August 3,
The real fight over Americas energy future isnt in coal, despite
the Trump administrations public focus on a mining revival. Rather,
dozens of pipeline projects, making up one of the largest
expansions of natural gas infrastructure in U.S. history, are where
the fossil fuel action is.
At a cost of billions of dollars, these pipelines will tap the
rich reservoir of fracked natural gas flowing out of the
Marcellus-Utica shale basin that lies under much of Pennsylvania,
Ohio and West Virginia.
The Trump administration and its allies, energy-dominance
manifestoes in hand, are eager to see these projects approved as
soon as the presidents nominees to the Federal Energy Regulatory
Commission (FERC) are confirmed by the Senate.
But are all these new gas pipelines really needed?
Critics say that the financial interests of gas and electric
companiesnot market demandare driving most of the new pipelines
proposed for the region. Those profits are approved by FERC, an
agency that is charged with ensuring public interests, but that
nurtures an exceptionally cozy relationship with industry, as
described in a comprehensive investigation published last month by
the Center for Public Integrity and StateImpact Pennsylvania, with
National Public Radio.
At every turn, the agencys process favors pipeline companies,
the review found after the groups interviewed more than 100 people,
reviewed FERC records, and analyzed nearly 500 pipeline cases.
It also noted another cozy relationship: the tight corporate
links between the companies building the pipelines and those buying
the natural gas, either to deliver it to homes and businesses or to
use it to make electricity.
These close relationships, explored in greater depth here by
InsideClimate News, not only set up surefire profits at the expense
of consumers, critics say; they also lock in long-term...