I do not know how many of you know the steps being taken across the Midwest and Northeast to stop pipeline construction. Everywhere I travel I hear about it and the troubles the midstream companies are having. There are numerous Google Alerts which identify stories about communities, organizations and individuals trying to stop pipeline construction. Pipeline construction is critical for the Marcellus and Utica to evolve to the next phase of development. The need for less expensive Marcellus and Utica natural gas in New England and the Southeastern parts of the U.S. is very important to the economic growth of these regions.
I read an article yesterday about the dire situation in Boston regarding natural gas. Bostonians pay the highest natural gas prices in the U.S. In January and February, they were paying $24.09 per million BTU’s in PA the price was $3.37.
In the previous winter, customers saw their monthly electric bills, already double the national average, rise a whopping 37 percent over the year before.
The hike came as a particularly cruel blow to homeowners who, caught in an equally tight oil market at the time, had to pay as much as $500 to $700 per month to fill household oil tanks. Facing annual energy bills in the thousands of dollars, even the toughest New Englanders are expressing new concerns over the region’s economic future.
Compounding the problem is that the region’s electric power providers are increasingly dependent on natural gas as a generation fuel now that aging coal, oil and nuclear plants are being retired.
Economists are saying the New England could be in dire economic straights unless they can get less cost Marcellus natural gas.
In spite of these warnings, there is still considerable resistance to the building pipelines from PA to New England.
Because of the pipeline resistance, some are beginning to think the considerable construction activity at Marcus Hook in Philadelphia is going to result not only in shipping LNG to Europe, but sending natural gas to New England via container ships.