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FERC providing ‘blank check’ to pipeline developers

December 30, 2020

World Pipelines:

The US federal agency responsible for approving interstate gas pipeline projects is basing its decisions on contracts rather than on today’s consumer energy needs or the public interest, according to a report released by the Institute for Energy Economics and Financial Analysis (IEEFA).

The report—FERC’s Failure to Analyse Energy Market Forces—details how the mere existence of business contracts for gas prompts the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) to approve pipelines, even if they don’t make financial sense for the public and investors.

“FERC is relying on a false premise in assessing a proposed pipeline’s necessity,” said Suzanne Mattei, an IEEFA energy analyst and co-author of the report. “The problems facing the gas market today are rooted in an oversupply of gas, low prices and shrinking demand due to energy efficiency and growing competition from renewables. When FERC made the rules in 1999, gas prices were higher and the market was more predictable.” 

[Elizabeth Corner]

More: FERC criticized for ‘blank check approval’ to pipeline builders

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