By Scott DiSavino
Sept. 28 (Reuters) – In recent years, U.S. natural gas production has skyrocketed, turning the country from a net importer of fuel into an exporter, largely due to growth in Pennsylvania’s Appalachian region, in Ohio and West Virginia.
Along with this 60% production gain over the past decade, numerous pipeline projects have been proposed to deliver this gas to markets in the Midwest and Northeast and south to export terminals for shipment. abroad in the form of LNG or liquefied natural gas.
However, many of the pipelines proposed to bring gas to neighboring communities have been scuttled in recent years, encountering local opposition to fossil fuel infrastructure, regulatory issues or protests from environmental groups.
The most recent victim was the PennEast pipeline from Pennsylvania to New Jersey, which reportedly pulled gas from the Marcellus shale in Pennsylvania.
Gas production in the Appalachians has grown from around 4.7 billion cubic feet per day (bcfd) in 2011 to around 34.9 bcfd now, which is more than a third of the 91.4 bcfd of dry gas American produced in 2020.
One billion cubic feet is enough to power about 5 million American homes per day.
Here are some of the recent projects that failed or couldn’t get started, as well as some important pipelines that took longer to complete.
The $ 8 billion Atlantic Coast pipeline was built from West Virginia to meet growing demand for gas in Virginia and North Carolina. The 600 mile (966 km) project was originally launched in 2018 and was designed to transport 1.5 billion cubic feet per day of natural gas.
However, cost overruns, legal battles, and licensing issues during the Trump administration led Duke Energy Corp and Dominion Energy Inc to ultimately decide to cancel the project.
The pipeline would have provided enough gas for about 7.5 million American homes per day.
MOUNTAIN VALLEY PIPELINE (MVP)
This pipeline was originally planned as another that would stretch from West Virginia to Virginia.
The 303-mile line will cost about $ 6.2 billion and provide enough gas for about 10 million American homes per day.
When MVP began construction in February 2018, it estimated that the 2.0 billion cubic foot project would cost around $ 3.5 billion and be in service by the end of 2018. Now, MVP expects which the project starts in the summer of 2022.
This long-term project has met with constant opposition from New York state lawmakers, especially ex-Governor Andrew Cuomo.
Several energy companies have tried for years to build gas pipelines between the Marcellus shale in Pennsylvania and New York, but Albany regulators have denied the plans.
Williams Cos Inc’s 125-mile Constitution Line is said to have transported enough gas for about 3.25 million homes per day.
Constitution applied to New York state regulators to build the line in 2013, but was unable to obtain permits for the water crossings. The line was discontinued in 2020.
The PennEast pipeline had been under development for several years, but was canceled due to a lack of permits in September 2021.
PennEast decided to halt the development even though the United States Supreme Court ruled in its favor in June in a lawsuit allowing the line to seize state-owned or controlled land in New Jersey.
The 120-mile pipe is said to have cost around $ 1.2 billion and was designed to deliver 1.1 billion cf / d of Marcellus Shale to customers in Pennsylvania and New Jersey.
National Fuel Gas Co’s (NFG) approximately $ 500 million north access pipe was designed to deliver approximately 0.5 billion cubic feet per day of gas from Pennsylvania to upstate New York .
When federal energy regulators approved the project in February 2017, they asked NFG to put the pipe into service by February 2019.
NFG, however, has not been able to obtain all the necessary permits from New York and has since asked federal regulators for more time to complete the project. So far, federal regulators have given NFG, which has not started work on the project, until February 2022 to put the pipe into service.
(Reporting by Scott DiSavino; written by David Gaffen Editing by Marguerita Choy)