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New York’s Growing Man-Made Natural Gas Crisis

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New York national grid gasNew York’s chief energy regulator, the Public Service Commission, is reluctantly admitting that the state faces a natural-gas shortage, though the commissioners disagree on what to do about it.

Even Commissioner Tracey Edwards, who devoted much of her time at last week’s meeting to complaining that utility National Grid had been “mean” in declaring a moratorium on natural-gas hookups in a major service area, admitted, “We have capacity issues.”

Commissioner John Howard was franker: “We need more gas. That’s an undeniable fact.”

But only Commissioner Diane Burman seemed willing to admit the state has made things worse by “not making decisions we need to make.”

This will boost carbon emissions by forcing greater use of “dirtier” fuels: “We will have the need for switching interruptible customers off of gas onto oil, isn’t that right?” she asked PSC engineer John Sano, who was there to advise on technical issues and confirmed that staff is on it.

Burman then pointed out: “We’ve had a policy of limiting new natural gas and it seems to promote more polluting fuels. … Those who say ‘No New Pipelines’ should look at what the ramifications are.”

She continued: “It’s easy to hate the utility,” but the state and the PSC should be looking at “our role” in the shortage.

Meanwhile, apologists for the no-pipelines crowd are resorting to conspiracy theories. Assemblyman William Colton (D-B’klynBrooklyn), has declared that National Grid is faking the shortage so that it can stockpile fuel to sell to other states when the city goes to 100 percent renewable energy, a shift he seems to think this is imminent.

Similarly, the Stop the Williams Pipeline Coalition points to evidence showing that operator Transco has offered to move less gas than planned through the pipeline — if it can just get it built — as proof that it doesn’t really need more fuel at all.

If New York’s leaders keep indulging this lunacy and blocking new fuel supplies, the state may wind up reducing its carbon footprint by forcing its residents to move to where they won’t have to shiver in the dark.

Read more at NY Post

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