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U.S. Senator McConnell asks FERC to kill climate rule for pipelines -Breaking


© Reuters. FILE PHOTO – A natural gas pipeline passes through Chino Hills State Park’s burn zone. This is as the ongoing coronavirus pandemic (COVID-19), in Chino Hills California, U.S.A, 21 April 2021. REUTERS/Lucy Nicholson


By Valerie Volcovici

WASHINGTON, (Reuters) – Senator Minority Leader Mitch McConnell urged federal regulators not to adopt new regulations to assess greenhouse gas emissions from pipelines prior to approving construction. He said the rules hinder gas exports to Europe when European allies most need them.

Senate’s most senior Republican asks the U.S. Federal Energy Regulatory Commission(FERC) not to withdraw rules that it issued in February. These regulations require that pipeline projects be reviewed to evaluate the effects of greenhouse gas emissions directly and indirectly and to consider the impact on vulnerable areas that are located near construction sites.

Companies that provide pipeline services include Kinder Morgan Boardwalk Pipeline (NYSE:), and Inc (NYSE 🙂 asked FERC to not apply the revised review to pending projects. The President Joe Biden administration was urged by environmental groups to continue its plans for combating climate change, despite disruptions to energy supplies due to Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.

McConnell sent a letter to Richard Glick (FERC Democratic Chairman) stating that creating new obstacles to access affordable and abundant energy is not logical, especially in these difficult times.

Biden, along with European counterparts, will be announcing plans to direct European shipments of liquefied Natural Gas. The announcement comes as Europe struggles with rapidly weaning off Russian natural gas.

Recent weeks have seen U.S. legislators and trade associations representing the energy sector call on the Biden administration for increased oil and natural gas exports to Europe.

The White House was slow to increase U.S. LNG exports, but this is due to concerns over the climate impact of long-term projects, industry and government sources stated.

The Energy Department stated last week that it is “committed” to helping its trading partners and allies get the energy they require while also continuing to reduce the climate impact.

McConnell stated that FERC should be focused on streamlining, expediting review and permitting.

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