FERC Gives NYC Transco Pipeline Expansion Favorable Enviro Review

NESE map – click for larger version

Some great news for the Williams Northeast Supply Enhancement (NESE) project–a project to beef up capacity along the Transco pipeline system going into New York City. The Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC), after delaying a decision for four months, has just issued a final *favorable* environmental impact statement (EIS) for the project.
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Westchester NatGas Moratorium Begins to Bite NYC/Cuomo on the Butt

Utility company Consolidated Edison recently announced it will slap a moratorium on hooking up new customers for natural gas in Westchester County (NYC suburb) beginning March 15 (see Moratorium on New NatGas Customers Coming in NYC Area). Realtors and county officials in Westchester are now up-in-arms that Con Ed had the audacity to actually announce it.
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Will New York City Begin to Import Russian LNG Like Boston?

We’re following up on a post we made last Thursday about a coming moratorium on new customer hookups for natural gas in Westchester and New York City (see Moratorium on New NatGas Customers Coming in NYC Area). We now have more specifics: beginning March 15 of this year, Consolidated Edison is putting the moratorium in place.
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Con Ed May Stop Adding New NatGas Customers Thx to Cuomo

The actions of political leaders have consequences. Sometimes dire consequences. People like New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo believe they can wave a magic wand and proclaim, “No more fossil fuels, we’ll just use solar and wind instead.” But proclaiming it doesn’t make it so. Proclaiming it doesn’t exempt you from the consequences of your actions. In recent years Cuomo has blocked new natural gas pipeline projects that would deliver Marcellus gas from Pennsylvania, claiming we need to move to so-called renewable energy. Now the chickens have come home to roost.
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Proposed Meadowlands Marcellus-Fired Electric Plant in Trouble

Manneken Pis – famous statue in Brussels, Belgium

MDN reported in April that a subsidiary of Japanese conglomerate Mitsubishi wants to build a huge, new $1.5 billion natural gas-fired electric generating plant in the Meadowlands (New Jersey), just outside of New York City (see Marcellus Electric Plant Proposed for Meadowlands to Power NYC). The North Bergen Liberty Generating Project, at 1,200 megawatts, will help replace some of the electricity lost when the Indian Point Nuclear plant located in New York along the Hudson River closes down in 2021. We suspect that since the mighty Transco pipeline, which flows mostly Marcellus molecules in the northeast, will feed the Meadowlands project, this plant will become an important new market for PA Marcellus production. The town where the plant will be located, North Bergen, is jazzed about the plant (see NJ Town Ready to Approve Meadowlands Marcellus-Fired Power Plant). And wonder of wonders, liberal Democrat NJ Gov. Phil Murphy approved the first in a series of required permits in July (see Surprise! NJ Issues Permits for Meadowlands Marcellus-Fired Plant). Yes, it did seem like things were going too well. The Sierra Club has been lobbying nonstop to defeat the project, and their efforts at spreading doom and gloom are, unfortunately, bearing fruit. Somehow the Clubbers have convinced the New York ISO (the electricity authority for NY, where the electricity from this plant will be sold) to claim it doesn’t really need the electricity after all. Even though 25% of its electricity will soon disappear from the grid when Indian Point closes. NY’s claim now means the project will be delayed and that the builders will need to produce a report proving NY really does need the electricity. An electric peeing match. The Clubbers have also spread rumors to neighboring towns, telling them the plant will poison their air, so some neighboring towns are now opposed to the project…
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NYC Commits Fossil Fuel Suicide – Sues Big Oil, Ending Investments

New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio is clinically insane. It’s time to put him in a straitjacket and prevent him from doing any more damage to a once-great city. de Blasio is using city resources to sue five oil companies, blaming them for “climate change”–the hoax that mankind is causing the earth to warm at an apocalyptic rate. The theory behind global warming is that burning fossil fuels (extracted by the five companies) releases carbon dioxide (CO2) into the atmosphere where the CO2 then acts like a canopy over the earth, trapping in heat from the sun, causing the earth to warm. And, as the theory goes, Mom Earth is warming up to such a degree that it will “soon” (any year now) kill plants, animals, mankind–all living things. All sorts of ills are laid at the feet of so-called global warming, now called “climate change”, including earthquakes, major storms, hurricanes, pestilence, racism. No, we’re not exaggerating. EVERYTHING is blamed on global warming. Even the record cold temperatures that we’ve experienced in the northeast are blamed on global warming! Wait–how can that be? How can a canopy effect trapping heat cause COLDER temps? Obviously it can’t–but these people will believe anything. Yes, CLINICALLY INSANE. But maybe not totally insane, because at its root, de Blasio’s move is not *really* about global warming and preserving the planet–it’s about an avowed socialist (de Blasio admits his perverse political leanings) attempting to steal money from those who earn it, in order to redistribute it to people who don’t earn it–people who will keep voting de Blasio into office in response to his political bribery. de Blasio has also instructed the city to divest its pension funds from any company that remotely has anything to do with fossil fuels. Now that IS insane!…
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Small Texas Driller Opens Branch Office in Midtown NYC

Texas Coastal Energy Company (TCEC) is a small but growing exploration and production company. TCEC was founded in 2011 by Jeff Gordon, an experienced (and third generation) Texas oil man. The company has drilled perhaps a dozen wells so far (maybe more, it’s hard to tell from their website). Why are they on our radar? TCEC is opening a new office in Manhattan, New York City. And why would they do that? Primarily because that’s where the big money is and they want to get some of that big money–but also because they’re considering drilling in the Marcellus Shale…
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New NYC Mayor Comes Out Against Fracking Anywhere in NY

NYC Mayor Bill De BlasioThe new mayor of New York City, Bill De Blasio, is anti-drilling and proud of it. Yesterday he told reporters he doesn’t want to see fracking anywhere in the state. That De Blasio–wow, what a deep thinker he is! Know where he gets his facts and information from about fracking? Watching movies like Gasland. Such intellectual heft. Such gravitas. The man is clearly smarter than any of the rest of us. Thank God he’s the new mayor.

Of course, De Blasio apparently doesn’t realize that fracking (of conventional oil and gas wells) happens right now in New York State and has been for over 40 years. But hey, let’s not let something like the truth get in the way of spinning a good fiction for the hoi polloi–us ordinary folks. We’re just so in awe of self righteous jerks intellectual leaders like De Blasio, we simply feel unworthy to be in His presence…
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Spectra NJ-NY Marcellus Gas Pipeline Goes Online Nov. 1

It’s been a long road and a long time in coming, but the good news is that starting Nov. 1, residents of New York City will have another 800 million cubic feet of cheap mostly-Marcellus natural gas flowing into the city through Spectra Energy’s 16 mile, $1.2 billion pipeline from New Jersey to New York. The pipeline will flow enough gas to heat 2 million homes in NYC each year. Outgoing Mayor Michael Bloomberg has called more natgas for NYC “vital”. Most New Yorkers are in favor of the new pipeline, but that didn’t deter some from trying to stop the new pipeline.

During construction of the pipeline Spectra had to deal with a lot of nonsense, like protesters who turned into strippers (see NYC Pipeline Protesters Get Naked, Paint Themselves Green), protesters who didn’t even tell themselves they were about to spontaneously break the law (see Nutjob Protester Stops NYC Pipeline Construction for 2 Hours), and groups of protesters like the [In]Sane Energy Project that sued to stop the pipeline (see Judge Tosses Out Lawsuit Against Spectra NYC Pipeline Project). Spectra pressed on through it all and they’re about to turn on the valve Nov. 1. Success at last!…
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First NY DEC Meeting on Proposed Drilling Regulations Held in Sullivan County

Middletown Times Herald-Record (Oct 29):
300 folks pack Sullivan fracking forum

The first scheduled meeting for public comments on the draft Supplemental Generic Environmental Impact Statement (SGEIS) held by the New York DEC happened yesterday in Sullivan County, NY. According to the Middletown Times Herald-Record:

Most of the speakers in the standing-room-only, mostly anti-drilling crowd of more than 300 at Sullivan County Community College said the proposed Department of Environmental Conservation rules for drilling of the Marcellus shale fall short.

The anti-drilling standard tactic is to delay drilling in hopes of building support to get it banned altogether. This was evidenced at the meeting. With regard to extending the DEC’s public comment period (which would further delay the start of drilling):

Paul Rush, deputy commissioner of the New York City Department of Environmental Protection, called for 45 extra days.

Joe DiPane of Callicoon called for six months, since the shale “has been formed underground for eons,” he said.

There are two more scheduled meetings, Nov. 10 in New York City and Nov. 12 in the Binghamton area. A third meeting is yet to be arranged in the Elmira area. (See Public Hearings on the New York Draft SGEIS for Marcellus Shale Drilling for details.) Landowners need to attend and make their voices heard!

Public Hearings on the New York Draft SGEIS for Marcellus Shale Drilling

New York Dept. of Environmental Conservation (Oct 13):
Press Release: DEC Schedules Public Hearings on Marcellus Shale Drilling Draft SGEIS

Landowners will want to attend the public hearings being held by the New York DEC on the draft regulations for drilling in the Marcellus Shale. The regulations are called the Supplemental Generic Environmental Impact Statement (SGEIS). Why attend? To educate yourself on the regulations, and (if you’re so inclined), to offer your comments of support. You can be sure the anti-drillers will be out and vocal–so you need to be out and vocal too if you’re interested in ever seeing drilling commence in New York State. Here are the dates for hearings so far:

  • Wednesday, Oct. 28, Sullivan County Community College, E Building, Seelig Theater, 112 College Rd., Loch Sheldrake, NY 12759.
  • Tuesday, Nov. 10, Stuyvesant High School, High School Auditorium, 345 Chambers Street, New York, NY 10282.
  • Thursday, Nov. 12, Chenango Valley High School, High School Auditorium, 221 Chenango Bridge Rd., Chenango Bridge, NY 13901.
  • Elmira – Corning, TBD.

The doors will open at 6 p.m. for individual questions and speaker sign up (first come, first called for commenting on the record). The public comment session will start at 7 p.m. Check the DEC web site for possible changes in time or location.

From the press release:

DEC staff will be available prior to the start of each session to answer individual questions about the format and contents of the draft SGEIS. The following procedures will guide the public hearings:

  • To accommodate as many people as possible, there will be a five-minute limit on oral presentations.
  • Speakers may supplement their oral presentations with written comments. Written and oral comments receive equal consideration.
  • Formal presentations (PowerPoint, etc.) cannot be accommodated.
  • Individuals intending to speak will be required to sign-in upon arrival and will be called in the order registered.

To view (or download) the 809-page draft SGEIS, go to this page: www.dec.ny.gov/energy/58440.html