NFG Update – Getting “Lousy Treatment” in NY, Threatens to Leave

National Fuel Gas Company (NFG), headquartered in Western New York State, is making noises (threats) that Gov. Andrew Cuomo should be very concerned about. NFG covers the full span of the oil and gas business–from upstream (with its wholly-owned drilling subsidiary Seneca Resources), to the midstream (with wholly-owned subsidiary Empire Pipeline) to downstream (NFG’s natural gas utility service to 740,000 customers in NY and PA). It’s a big company that generates a lot of jobs and revenue for New York State. Yet NY is metaphorically crapping all over NFG–and the company is signaling its willingness to retaliate by leaving. No, not move the company HQ, or sell off its gigantic utility business. Nothing of that sort (yet, anyway). But NFG CEO Ronald Tanski said on an earnings call last Friday that NFG is “getting lousy regulatory treatment in New York State” and that “Given this type of regulatory treatment in the state, we have to take a serious look at our ability to achieve any reasonable growth in New York.” Translation: We’ll stop launching new projects that invest billions in the Empire State, and instead invest that money and the jobs it creates in PA and other states. The “lousy treatment” NFG is getting is related to NY’s corrupt Dept. of Environmental Conservation decision to deny it permits to build the Northern Access Pipeline (see NFG Calls Cuomo DEC Denial of Northern Access Pipe “Troubling”). NFG has taken the Cuomo DEC to court to try and get the DEC’s capricious pipeline decision overturned. However, the damage is now done. NFG is threatening to invest elsewhere–and we take them at their word. This is not an empty threat…

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