The Winners of the PA DEP $12.6 Million ME2 Hunger Games Are…

Que the music with dramatic drums, cymbals and trumpets. Camera A, zoom in on Secretary McDonnell. The whole state is watching. It’s time for the Pennsylvania Dept. of Environmental Protection (DEP) to announce the winners of PA’s Hunger Games-style contest to grab a piece of the $12.6 million “fine” paid by Sunoco Logistics Partners for “permit violations related to the construction of the Mariner East 2 pipeline project” (see Sunoco LP Pays PA DEP $12.6M to Resume ME2 Pipeline Construction).
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Mountain Valley Pipe Keeps Building Despite Court Action re Permits

Mountain Valley Pipeline, a project of EQT Midstream, continues to work on constructing its 303-mile long project from West Virginia into Virginia–despite a recent court order overturning some of the permits for the project (see Court Overturns MVP WV Permit; FERC Shutdown Coming Again?). The fact that MVP is working as fast as they can despite a partial shut down has antis fit to be tied. Which puts a broad smile on our face.
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FERC Gives Atlantic Coast Pipe Permission to Cut Trees in Va.

In September the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) lifted a stop-work order for the 600-mile Atlantic Coast Pipeline (ACP) project that stretches from West Virginia through Virginia and into North Carolina (see Victory! FERC Lifts Stop Work Order for Atlantic Coast Pipeline). Shortly thereafter, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit took further action to overturn permits that affect about 21 miles of the project (see 4th Circuit Again Blocks NPS Permit for Atlantic Coast Pipeline). However, most of ACP remains under construction. Yesterday FERC granted ACP permission for tree cutting in Buckingham County, Va.
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Trout Unlimited Takes a Stab at Blocking Pipelines Using Maps

You can just imagine it. Maya van Rossum (THE Delaware Riverkeeper), Tony Ingraffea (former Cornell prof and member of Trout Unlimited), Sandra Steingraber (paid by Ithaca College to be a climate protester) and other far-out lefties sitting in a room hatching yet another plan to block new pipeline projects, all in a bid to stop the use of all fossil fuels. “I know I know!” says one of them. “Let’s create a map of ‘high value streams and rivers’ and ‘areas of ecological sensitivity’ and then dare those filthy, nasty pipeline companies to build a pipeline across any of them. We’ll draw the map so every area is at ‘risk’–except for a few ditches in the middle of nowhere. That’ll do it!” And, voila, Trout Unlimited (TU), colluding with other Big Green groups, has just released a magical map to, you know, be “helpful” to pipeline companies, so they know where they can’t stick a nasty pipeline (i.e. anywhere). That’s what TU has just released.
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PA Senate Considers Bill Exempting Conv. Drillers from Shale Regs

The Pennsylvania Senate Appropriations Committee will today conduct an “off-the-floor” meeting to discuss and potentially report out for a vote House Bill (HB) 2154, a bill introduced in March to “roll back” (more like “lock in”) regulations that govern conventional PA drilling to the Oil and Gas Act of 1984 (see 2 PA Bills Would Roll Back Conventional Drilling Regs to 1984). The bills are in response to coming changes proposed by leftist Gov. Tom Wolf to over-regulate conventional drillers.
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Rice Boys Invest in Fracking Software Company, Toby Joins Board

After selling Rice Energy to EQT (see EQT Buys Rice Energy in $8.2B Deal, Becomes #1 Gas Producer in US), the four Rice brothers, all of whom worked at Rice Energy (and left after the merger), launched a new venture (see Rice Brothers Act II – $200M Marcellus/Utica Investment Firm). Dan, Toby, Derek and Ryan Rice plus a fifth partner, a former VP at Rice, pooled $200 million of their money (and their expertise) and launched Rice Investment Group (RIG). RIG has just closed on a round of investment in Cold Bore Technology, a company that uses software to do better fracking. Toby Rice joined Cold Bore’s board. It’s good to see the boys back and active.
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FERC Commissioner LaFleur Admits She’s a Global Warming Activist

Cheryl LaFleur

For some time we’ve noticed that both of the Democrat members of the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission have been voting against natgas pipeline projects using the excuse of mythical man-made global warming (euphemistically labelled “climate change”). It used to be, under Lord Obama, that Commissioner Cheryl LaFleur didn’t use the climate change excuse when deciding about projects. But something happened. Someone got to her. Maybe Chuck Schumer? Nancy Pelosi? Somebody has told LaFleur if she ever wants another job in the DC swamp after she leaves FERC, she needs to start vetoing pipeline projects. And so she does. Using global warming as the excuse. LaFleur talked about her new-found penchant to use global warming in FERC decision making at the North American Gas Forum this week in DC.
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Energy Stories of Interest: Wed, Oct 17, 2018

The “best of the rest”–stories that caught MDN’s eye that you may be interested in reading: Natural gas service coming to Tunkhannock; Ohio county commissioners visit Shell cracker site; New CNX Midstream president sees opportunity in the pipelines; Tug Hill alliance grows, secures funds for wind farm review; City workers’ pension funds hinge on Mayor de Blasio’s environmental stand; Is the Niobrara really the next big thing?; Construction reaches its peak at Duke’s Lake Julian, NC plant; NJ lawmakers seek to limit disposal of fracking by-products; U.S. shale’s glory days are numbered; The changing U.S. energy trade balance is still dominated by crude oil imports; Industry, regulators unite to defend fracking in Mexico; Tokyo to back US exports of shale gas to Asia; Temporary natural-gas generators power data centers.
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