Guess we should have seen this one coming. Last week MDN told you that U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia rejected an appeal by the rich snobs from Cooperstown that call themselves Otsego 2000, challenging the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission’s (FERC) approval of Dominion Energy’s New Market Project to build two new compressor stations in Upstate NY (see Fed Court Rules Against NY Antis in “Landmark” Dominion Pipe Case). The snobs just won’t let it go–they hate being told “NO” by anyone… Continue reading
Antis pinned their hopes that they could get the U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia to overturn a Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) approval for Dominion to build a couple of compressor stations in upstate New York, thereby forcing FERC to consider mythical man-made global warming in ALL pipeline decisions. The case had the makings of being a “landmark” case. Yesterday antis lost their landmark case when the court ruled the party bringing the lawsuit, Otsego 2000, didn’t have standing to bring the lawsuit in the first place. Continue reading
This post is about a pipeline project we’ve written quite a bit about over the past few years–Dominion Energy’s New Market project that ever-so-modestly expands an existing pipeline in Upstate New York. But at its heart, the issue is much deeper. Anti-fossil fuel radicals are challenging this project, in court, as a way to force the government to consider man-made global warming when approving such projects. Continue reading
A boatload of anti fossil fuel zealots from Cooperstown put down their wine glasses long enough to pack an auditorium in nearby Oneonta to bloviate against a sensible plan to build a CNG “decompressor” facility to accept trucks loaded with CNG during wintertime and summertime when area supplies of natgas get dangerously low. We wrote about the proposed facility, described as “a decompression station for compressed natural gas deliveries by truck to supplement resources” two weeks ago (see Oneonta, NY Wants to Build NatGas Decompressor for Short Supplies). In brief, here’s the issue: On really cold and really hot days there’s not enough natural gas in the region, and some large users of gas, like the local hospital and state university, actually have to stop using gas and switch to burning oil as a backup. It’s nuts. To overcome lack of clean-burning gas supplies, the local econ development people are trying to chase down grants to build a decompression station which would be used for maybe two weeks out of the entire year. Wednesday night the Oneonta Town Board held a hearing to get more details about the project. The loons from Cooperstown (i.e., Otsego 2000) turned out in force, some 100 of them, to protest the plan. Why? Because it’s a “fossil fuel.” What did the loons offer as an alternative to this sensible plan to truck in CNG only on days when it’s needed? They recommend “retrofitting old buildings to save energy” (i.e. throw on extra sweaters and turn the thermostat down), or switch to renewables. You know, solar and wind nirvana. What about when the sun doesn’t shine and the wind doesn’t blow? Just do without. It’d only be for a few days at a time… Continue reading
The main economic development agency in Otsego County, NY, known as Otsego Now, is working on a plan to build a “decompressor” in the Oneonta area to help with natural gas supplies. The proposed facility is described as “a decompression station for compressed natural gas deliveries by truck to supplement resources.” Here’s the problem. On really cold and really hot days, there’s not enough natural gas in the region, and some large users of gas (they get gas from local utility NYSEG), actually have to stop using gas and switch to oil as a backup. It’s nuts. Apparently NYSEG (New York State Electric & Gas, owned by Spainish-based Iberdrola) isn’t in the mood to upgrade a local pipeline that brings gas to the area. So to overcome lack of gas, the local econ development people are trying to chase down grants to build a decompression station, to accept CNG from a virtual pipeline (trucked in CNG), converting the compressed gas back to normal pressure so it can flow through NYSEG’s less-than-adequate pipelines in the area to large gas users that need it… Continue reading
There’s a small group of rich snobs who have created a mini-swamp in Cooperstown, NY. They go to each other’s wine tasting parties and pretend they’re Important People. Gentry class. Folks with lots of money who want to keep Upstate as their own private playground. You know…keep the poor folks away from your property, unless they’re mowing the lawn or weeding the garden. God forbid people like disgusting farmers should actually make money on drilling or pipelines. These are the type of people behind a group called Otsego2000. They just can’t accept the reality that their will is not being obeyed in blocking a VERY modest upgrade to an existing pipeline that runs through Upstate–called the New Market Project. Dominion’s New Market Project (currently under construction) consists of building two new compressor plants and upgrading another to help flow more abundant, cheap and clean-burning Marcellus Shale gas from Pennsylvania into the northeast (see Dominion Asks FERC for New Compressors in Upstate NY, WV). The project costs $159 million and will provide 112,000 dekatherms per day (Dth/d) of extra natural gas capacity along ~200 miles of existing Dominion pipeline across Upstate. The pipeline runs through the Horseheads, Ithaca, Syracuse and Albany areas. The snobs of Otsego2000 have just sued the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission in federal court to try and stop the project–even though not one of the compressor stations is located in Otsego County! Otsego2000 is a not-for-profit organization founded in 1981 “to protect the environmental, agricultural, scenic, cultural and historic resources of the Otsego Lake region and northern Otsego County.” As near as we can tell, the New Market Project doesn’t impact Otsego County at all. Yet Otsego2000 is fighting the project, with no legal standing to do so. Go figure… Continue reading
One of the arguments/concerns used to defeat a facility near Binghamton, NY that would fill trucks transporting CNG to large customers not lucky enough to be located close to a natgas pipeline is that the trucks used to haul the CNG are “bomb trucks.” Just waiting to explode if they should be in an accident. And you know that sooner or later there will be an accident. NG Advantage had big plans to build a virtual pipeline (gas compression & trucking facility) on the outskirts of Binghamton, in the Town of Fenton. The facility would use gas from the Millennium Pipeline to fill trailers outfitted with a series of CNG canisters. We sat through several information sessions where the safety of those trailers was explained. We looked at one of the rigs, up close and personal. We recall one woman from Hillcrest screeching “It’s so BIG!” upon seeing the tractor trailer–which is much shorter than a standard tractor trailer rig. We heard NG explain that if a truck should be so unfortunate to be in an accident, the safety design would automatically release the gas, which dissipates into the atmosphere immediately–making an explosion or fire extremely unlikely. But facts make no difference in a heated, emotional debate. NG isn’t the only company attempting to service businesses in Upstate with CNG, to compensate for Cuomo’s ban on safe pipelines. Another company, Xpress Natural Gas (XNG), has a virtual pipeline operation based just south of Binghamton in Susquehanna County, PA. Things are so much easier in PA (sigh). An XNG truck was traveling through Otsego County, NY, when the truck overturned on a rural roadway. We thought, this is it. Major explosion, right? Scorched earth everywhere. Ball of fire. Driver burned to a cinder. But no, none of that happened. In fact, NOTHING HAPPENED. The truck overturned, and there it sat until it was pulled back upright again. Perfectly safe, as designed. Which illustrates and exposes the lies so often spread about virtual pipeline operations… Continue reading
Earlier this year Xpress Natural Gas (XNG) spent $18.6 million to build a “virtual pipeline” facility in Susquehanna County, PA that employs ~90 people and loads up to 100 compressed natural gas (CNG) tanker trucks each day with PA Marcellus gas, for deliveries to customers across the Northeast and Mid-Atlantic states (see Major CNG Virtual Pipeline Coming to Susquehanna County, PA). Many of XNG’s trucks (40 per day) head up Interstate 81, catch Interstate 88 in the Binghamton area, and keep on going, eventually arriving in Herkimer County where the trucks unload the gas into the Iroquois Pipeline. Iroquois gets up to 50 million cubic feet per day (MMcf/d) from XNG’s trucks, using it for resale to customers further on down the pipeline in New York and New England (see XNG Virtual Pipe Delivering 50 MMcf/d of PA NatGas to NY Pipeline ). However, some residents in Upstate NY, in Otsego County (we suspect the same anti-fossil fuel nutters who lobbied to ban fracking and ban new pipelines) are up in arms with XNG’s daily truck trips. In order to shave miles and money from having to use Interstate 90 (NY Thruway with big tolls), XNG instead leaves I-88 and uses several state highways, routing the trucks through small towns. An eyewitness who lives along the route emailed MDN back in September said, “these [XNG drivers] are very considerate to the speed limits in the small towns they go through, I think these drivers are well disciplined…(maybe disciplined is not the right word) and the trucks are very quiet.” However, a group of antis turned up at a meeting last Thursday night in Otsego County to gripe and moan about the truck traffic. They don’t want fracking. They don’t want pipelines. And now they don’t want trucks hauling natural gas coming past their front door. Maybe they should just quit using all fossil fuels themselves and begin living like cavemen again?… Continue reading
Since announcing the project in 2012, the Constitution Pipeline has handed out more than $2 million in community grants to fire departments, police departments and a variety of nonprofit organizations that benefit the community. Recently New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo decided to block the Constitution Pipeline to placate his radical left supporters (see NY Gov. Cuomo Refuses to Grant Permits for Constitution Pipeline). Williams and its partners in the project have taken NY to court to overrule their blockage (see Williams Sues NY Over Constitution Pipe – DEC May Lose Authority). Even though Cuomo’s dastardly action has thrown the project’s future into some doubt, Williams and the Constitution are expressing no doubts. They’ve just handed out another $50,000 in grants (the eighth time they’ve done it) to worthy organizations along the pipeline’s proposed route. Here’s who got the money, and how much… Continue reading
Back in March, MDN wrote an article highlighting the practice by Williams and their Constitution Pipeline of handing out grants to worthy causes and organizations, like fire departments, the Boy Scouts and local Chambers of Commerce. Anti-drillers typically call it payola, or greasing the skids to make those communities more accepting of the pipeline when it comes time to build it (see Constitution Pipeline Payments to Groups – Donations or Payola?). To be honest, we struggle with the issue ourselves. We think it’s great to make those payments–but we think it’s probably better to make the payments after the pipeline is fully approved and ready to be built (or already built). For us the issue is one of timing, not about the payments themselves. However, for the dunderheads in the Village of Cooperstown, NY (yes, where the Baseball Hall of Fame is located), officials there refuse to allow the local fire department to apply for a $20,000 matching grant with Williams to purchase new equipment–simply because they’re so opposed to anything to do with natural gas and fossil fuels… Continue reading
They’re noisy 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. They use rare earth minerals in their manufacturing process and endanger Chinese workers who have to mine the toxic metals from the ground. They kill bald eagles and bats and all manner of birds. No one wants to live next to one going whup whup whup 24/7 (drives the neighbors insane). We’re talking of commercial windmills of course. Today MDN kicks off a campaign to get 170 New York townships to ban windmills. Oh, and while we’re at it, let’s also have town boards ban big solar farms too… Continue reading
You’ve heard of save the whales, save the snail darters, and maybe even save the tree bats (see Natgas Jumps Thru Hoops for Bats While Solar Farm Torches Turtles). The latest anti-drilling faux excuse for stopping the already-authorized, permitted and public hearing’d to death Constitution Pipeline in upstate New York is, yes, save the American bald eagle! We learn from the anti-drilling Oneonta Star that bald eagles are rather discriminating. They don’t mind traffic noise from a busy interstate highway less than a half mile from their nests–but if Williams happens to do a little blasting of bedrock so they can lay pipe–that will scare the bald eagles right out of their tail feathers… Continue reading
A “this is pretty interesting” story recently crossed our radar. MDN has reported, for several years now, about the Williams Constitution Pipeline being built from Susquehanna County, PA to Schoharie County, NY where it will connect to both the Tennessee Gas Pipeline (TGP) and the Iroquois pipeline (see New Marcellus Constitution Pipeline Announces “Final” Route). We even took you along for an inside look at one of the public comment sessions, called a scoping hearing (see Vicariously Attend FERC Scoping Hearing on Constitution Pipeline). The Constitution will begin construction very soon. Now comes word from Kinder Morgan that they want to build a second pipeline from the Marcellus Shale gas fields of Susquehanna County to their TGP, taking virtually the same route… Continue reading
Calling all New York pro-drillers! President Obama is visiting Cooperstown, NY this Thursday, May 22nd. The 70,000-member Joint Landowners Coalition of New York (JLCNY) has put out the call for as many of their members as possible to turn up at the Baseball Hall of Fame to hold signs welcoming and informing President Obama that he needs to share some of his energy leadership with the recalcitrant man-child governor of New York: Andy Cuomo. According to the email call to action, the JLCNY says, “…let President Obama know that NY lacks his leadership on energy matters and the rights and benefits being enjoyed throughout the rest of America are STILL being denied to NY citizens!” Here here! We agree 100%.
There’s a reason why the so-called Elected Officials to Protect New York–a group of numskull politicians in New York State who oppose drilling so they can get more votes–trots out a “retired high-ranking oil executive” who’s already made his millions and doesn’t give a #$%@ about anyone else making money–to declare the miracle of hydraulic fracturing can’t be done safely. The reason? Because they can’t find anyone else from the industry to do it–like someone who has actually been in charge of a fracking operation and knows how safe it is (unlike the “retired high-ranking oil executive” who retired before high-volume fracking came around). And so, one rich, old, white guy is the darling of New York’s anti-drillers and gets major play in anti-drilling publications like the Albany Times Union, while thousands of oil company executives that actually oversee fracking are never consulted for their opinion about a subject on which they are expert. Figures.
Anti-drilling politicians trot out the retired executive–who has a summer home in swanky Cooperstown next to other retired, rich, white liberals–to denigrate one of the highest achievements of mankind yet: hydraulic fracturing. He thinks all fracking should be shut down–it ain’t safe, ya know. And the TU, in dictation mode, dutifully “reports” it. Meanwhile, the retired executive sips another martini with his rich, white, liberal neighbors… Continue reading