FERC Launches Review of Its Process to Approve NatGas Pipelines

Government agencies, like the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC), share many of the same characteristics with business entities. For example, each has its own standard operating procedures (SOPs)–the rules that govern how that organization operates. In 1999 FERC adopted SOPs for how it reviews and decides on which pipeline projects it will approve, or not approve (called “Certification of New Interstate Natural Gas Pipeline Facilities – Statement of Policy”). Since 1999 FERC has operated pretty much the same way, taking into consideration certain factors, discounting or ignoring other factors, when approving pipeline projects. It’s time to update FERC’s SOPs. Last week FERC launched a review of its policies in reviewing pipeline projects and has invited the public to provide comments. Anti fossil fuel nutters have been the first in line, hoping to get FERC to adopt policies so strict no pipelines will ever again be approved. Antis have for years lied about FERC’s role in reviewing pipelines, calling the agency a “rubber stamp” approving 99% of the pipeline projects submitted. What antis don’t tell you is that FERC has provided negative feedback for many (most?) pipeline projects, causing the builder to either change the project plan or abandon it altogether. Under current SOPs pipelines either get built “the right way” according to FERC’s strict standards, or the project is withdrawn with no need to be rejected (hence the high “approval” rate). Here’s more background and context for what FERC may be looking to change about the way it approves pipeline projects…

Please Login to view this content. (Not a member? Join Today!)
You do not have permission to view the comments.

Please Login to post a comment