May 28, 2021 Read More →

FERC weighs changes to pipeline guidelines, opens public comments

Energywire: 

As the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission weighs changes to its natural gas pipeline reviews, it’s grappling with a key question: How should it determine whether a project is needed?

For years, the agency has signed off on proposals if developers could prove they had customers ready to reserve capacity on their pipeline. But critics say these so-called precedent agreements have a glaring loophole: Different units of the same company can act as both seller and buyer — winning a green light from FERC in the process.

The commission’s reliance on precedent agreements is one of many topics included in FERC’s ongoing review of how it considers and approves new natural gas pipelines.

The outcome could shape the future direction of the independent agency, which regulates power markets and large-scale energy projects. Analysts say FERC’s approach to large-scale natural gas projects could make or break many of the Biden administration’s clean energy goals.

[Miranda Willson]

More: ‘Self-dealing’ loophole could upend FERC pipeline reviews

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