Saturday, November 27, 2021

Play

Don't want the hassles of Black Friday - consider a refurbished gift this year; day after Thanksgiving travel could be messy - and supporters regroup for recreational marijuana in South Dakota.

Play

Big retailers predict an historic holiday shopping season, but small businesses are not sharing that optimism, and economists weigh in on what s behind the nation's labor shortages.

Play

South Dakota foster kids find homes with Native families; a conservative group wants oil and gas reform; rural Pennsylvania residents object to planes flying above tree tops; and poetry debuts to celebrate the land.

Need for Atlantic Coast Pipeline Falls

Play

Monday, February 11, 2019   

CHARLESTON, W.Va. — The demand the huge Atlantic Coast Pipeline was intended to meet is disappearing, according to documents from the corporations behind the project.

Dominion and Duke Energy own almost all of the pipeline, as well as the electric utilities it would supply with natural gas. When applying for a federal permit, they argued it was needed to meet rising electricity demand in North Carolina and coastal Virginia.

But Cathy Kunkel, an energy analyst with the Institute for Energy Economics and Financial Analysis, said utility filings in those states now show the outlook has changed dramatically - in part because of competition from cheap, renewable energy.

"Dominion is not projecting any increase in natural-gas demand until 2032,” Kunkel said. “Duke is still planning to build some natural-gas plants, but most of that has shifted to the late 2020s."

The energy companies say they need more pipeline capacity to move fracked gas out of the Marcellus and Utica fields of northern West Virginia, where the price for it is artificially depressed by a transportation bottleneck.

The 600-mile pipeline across the three states has faced a number of setbacks, including lawsuits by landowners and conservationists. It was recently announced that the total cost of the project would rise to $7.5 billion, and its opening would be delayed until 2021.

If the builders can get state utility regulators' approval, they can shift the full expense of the line onto ratepayers, along with a guaranteed profit. But Kunkel said investors in the utilities may be starting to worry about the financial risks.

"The project has been delayed by these court challenges, it's also over-budget,” she said. “And if the state regulators say, 'You clearly don't need all of the gas capacity that you signed up for here; we're not going to let you charge it to your ratepayers,' then that would be a very significant blow."

Kunkel said the incentives tend to make utilities and pipeline companies overestimate demand and overbuild capacity. She said that's becoming a more serious issue as climate change poses increasing risks.

Kunkel helped write the analysis for a report from IEEFA and Oil Change International.



get more stories like this via email

Vicki Harder-Thorne is honoring 30 years of sweat equity her parents put into restoring 80 acres of land in Ottawa County. (Harder-Thorne)

Environment

COLUMBUS, Ohio -- Succession is an inevitable process for Ohio farmers, and it can also be an opportunity to re-imagine the land. Vicki Harder-…


Environment

HELENA, Mont. -- To honor the Biden administration's steps toward greater ties with tribal nations, conservation groups are calling on it to list the …

Social Issues

PIERRE, S.D. -- Supporters of establishing recreational marijuana in South Dakota say they're pouring all their energy into a new ballot initiative…


Farming is Virginia's largest private industry, according to the state Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services. (Adobe Stock)

Environment

RICHMOND, Va. -- In central Virginia, permanent access to land is one of the biggest barriers to farming. A new land-trust model aims to secure both …

Social Issues

BOSTON -- This holiday season, consumer advocates are urging Commonwealth residents to consider giving gifts that don't require purchasing anything…

The mission of the 'Buy Nothing Project' is to promote the giving of goods and services within hyperlocal circles. (bfleeson/Pixabay)

Social Issues

AUSTIN, Texas -- Supply chain delays have some holiday shoppers stressed that gifts won't be on store shelves on this "Black Friday," or won't arrive …

Social Issues

DETROIT -- As cold weather moves in, state agencies are working to make sure Michiganders know how to apply for the Michigan Energy Assistance …

Social Issues

NEW YORK -- A team of New York-based filmmakers is producing a documentary about reclaiming Indigenous heritage, told through the experiences of an 18…

 

Phone: 303.448.9105 Toll Free: 888.891.9416 Fax: 208.247.1830 Your trusted member- and audience-supported news source since 1996 Copyright 2021