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Court Kicks Constitution Pipeline and Case Down Road

Constitution Pipeline - Tom Shepstone ReportsTom Shepstone
Shepstone Management Company, Inc.

 

The Second Circuit Court of Appeals has ruled on the Constitution Pipeline, kicking Williams in the gut on part of it and kicking part of it down the road.

A three-judge panel of the Second Circuit Court of Appeals in New York City composed of Carter, G.W. Bush and Obama appointees has issued a very disappointing decision in the Constitution Pipeline case. It ruled against the Constitution Pipeline on the matter of whether the New York DEC acted arbitrarily in denying water quality certification while saying it had no authority to decide the critical question; whether DEC took too long. A read of the opinion (available here with my highlighting of important points) is an exercise in appreciating everything that’s wrong with New York, the courts and the pipeline industry.

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Dimock Fractivists Do Weapons Grade Deflection and Obfuscation

cost of renewables - Tom ShepstoneTom Shepstone
Natural Gas NOW

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Unbelievable as it may be, fractivists are trying to pull their Dimock tale out of the dustbin of history by defending a “weapons grade” uranium charge.

It’s time to do one of those “you can’t make this stuff up” stories. This one, predictably has to do with Dimock, the original tall tale of fracking. It grows out of the response to my “Pigs to Rigs” post about Cabot’s suit against pig farm lawyer Charlie Speer and his client; junkyard plaintiff Ray Kemble.

The article brought numerous cheers from Susquehanna County residents and others familiar with the saga who were thoroughly pleased to see the tables turned on the not-so-funny jokers in their midst. Media types, apparently tired of trying to make something serious out of wild Craig Stevens, Ray Kemble and Vera Scroggins accusations, mostly shrugged it off.

But, one hard-core fractivist by the name of Hope Forpeace (real name) thinks the “Pigs to Rigs” lawsuit is somehow a fatal mistake for Cabot and the industry. Her rationale? Cabot really did pollute Dimock wells with “weapons grade uranium.”

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Conflicted Delaware Riverkeeper Blithely Ignores the Rules

cost of renewables - Tom ShepstoneTom Shepstone
Natural Gas NOW

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The Delaware Riverkeeper is flaunting tax-exemption and other rules and those agencies who entertain the group themselves become conflicted at every turn.

The Delaware Riverkeeper would not exist but for the funding of the Haas, Heinz, Rockefeller Wallace families who aim to make a wilderness of as much of the Northeast as they possibly can. It is the political arm of the William Penn Foundation which, as a private foundation, shouldn’t be engaged in any politics (lobbying) whatsoever but, by handing mega-grants to the Riverkeeper exercises does so in a major way.

There are rules supposedly governing both the foundation and the Delaware Riverkeeper, who are treated as tax-exempt charities both with respect to their operations and the donations made to them by others. Those rules, and others, are blithely flaunted and tie up anyone who deals with the organization into knots. It’s time it was investigated in a serious way.

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Pennsylvania One of Top Oil and Gas States (Again)

cost of renewables - Tom ShepstoneTom Shepstone
Natural Gas NOW

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The petroleum industry began in Oil City, Pennsylvania and, today, it is, once again, one of the top oil and gas states, thanks to the shale revolution.

The National Transit Building in downtown Oil City, Pennsylvania, is where it all really began. John D. Rockefeller had a small corner office on the upper floor and it was anything but extravagant, but from there the industry spread around the world helping to make modern civilization possible. Today, according to a recent study put out by the American Petroleum Institute, Pennsylvania is again one of the top oil and gas states.

Significantly, the title of the full study is The Impacts of the Natural Gas and Oil Industry on the US Economy in 2015, with gas listed before oil. Maybe it was just a grammatical thing, but there is every reason to put natural gas first, particularly when it comes to Pennsylvania. Th shale revolution has returned the Commonwealth to near the top of the heap among oil and gas states.

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Northeast Air Quality Rises to New Highs with Natural Gas Use

cost of renewables - Tom ShepstoneTom Shepstone
Natural Gas NOW

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Northeast air quality has dramatically improved at the same time as natural gas consumption has similarly risen and it’s no coincidence, of course.

A few days ago the EPA came out with a celebratory website of sorts marking the great improvements in the nation’s air quality since the Clean Air Act was enacted. It’s not your typical government report and is well worth perusing. The facts about how much cleaner our nation’s air is today are nothing less than startling; in a good way. Energy In Depth took notice of the report and posted a very nice piece noting the gains made while natural gas use was rising, a fact not much mentioned in the report because, no doubt, the EPA wants the credit—all of it. The EID analysis is also worth your time. But, there’s more.

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“Pigs to Rigs” Lawyers, Dimock Junkyard Plaintiff Sued by Cabot

cost of renewables - Tom ShepstoneTom Shepstone
Natural Gas NOW

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An overdue lawsuit by Cabot Oil & Gas has been filed against a gang of “pigs to rigs” trial lawyers and their Dimock junkyard plaintiff Ray Kemble.

I have joyous news for all our readers. Cabot Oil & Gas has fired a shot against the seedy trial lawyers and even seedier hustlers trying to earn fame and money with jugs of brown water and filthy accusations surrounding Dimock. Cabot has filed a lawsuit against pig farm suer Charlie Speer, his Luzerne County trial lawyer associates and Ray Kemble, the Dimock junkyard plaintiff fractivists have descended to using as an example despite his complete lack of credibility on virtually anything.

It’s a $5 million lawsuit enjoyable to read for entertainment but, more than that and the obvious quest for justice, this is a glorious opportunity to expose some of the special interests behind fractivism. Discovery is going to be a nightmare for Speer, Kemble and allies.

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Delaware River Fractivists Should Be Afraid, Very Afraid

cost of renewables - Tom ShepstoneTom Shepstone
Natural Gas NOW

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The Delaware Riverkeeper/Povertykeeper and other Delaware River fractivists are apparently very afraid the DRBC moratorium will be lifted and rightly so.

Our friends over at Energy In Depth have nailed it with their observations about the effects of a DRBC lawsuit. Delaware River fractivists of all stripes have every reason to be afraid, Seth Whitehead says, and he’s exactly correct. They’re showing their fear with one of those bogus petition efforts in which they engage from time to time whenever they want to rattle their swords.

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Another Dimock ATSDR Study? You’ve Got to be Kidding!

cost of renewables - Tom ShepstoneTom Shepstone
Natural Gas NOW

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It’s back! There is another Dimock ATSDR study underway, proving how easy it is for fractivists to manipulate government into the ridiculous and the corrupt.

How many times will they get away with it? There’s now yet another Dimock ATSDR study of water wells taking place at the request of fractivists. Readers of this blog will recall this follows another Dimock ATSDR study conducted in 2012, when the EPA came to town to test wells and had the Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry (ATSDR) analyze the results.

That study was instigated by Josh Fox and now forgotten people such as Craig Sautner who bombarded the EPA with complaints until they relented and did a study proving just how ridiculous the fractivist claims really were, at which point Sautner went apoplectic, turned on the agency and self-destructed in an epic blazing flameout. (Must watch video here.)

Now, it’s “déjà vu all over again.”

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Riverkeeper Fail: The Shrinking Influence of a Big Mouth

cost of renewables - Tom ShepstoneTom Shepstone
Natural Gas NOW

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The Delaware Riverkeeper Network, a political action group masquerading as a charity, failed again as two FERC members were appointed by unanimous consent.

Earlier in the week a regular reader sent me an action alert from the Delaware Riverkeeper Network, known not so affectionately here as the Delaware Povertykeeper or right arm of the Philadelphia gentry class. He sarcastically made the subject line “No lobbying here.” It was all about the continuing and quite extensive efforts of the Riverkeeper/Povertykeeper to prevent new FERC appointments so key pipeline projects would be stalled and kept in limbo ad infinitum.

The fact the Riverkeeper/Povertykeeper even imagined this was a viable strategy ignored the political realties; both Democrats and Republicans want those projects. This is why Maya and company, the biggest mouths on the fractivist scene and hired guns for elitist power-brokers were ignored and those appointments have now been approved. It was a big fail.

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Wolf Postures and Wastes Time While DEP Permits Languish

cost of renewables - Tom ShepstoneTom Shepstone
Natural Gas NOW

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Pennsylvania Gov. Tom Wolf thinks it’s more important to waste time demagoguing clean air issues than solving them by issuing stalled DEP pipeline permits.

Pennsylvania Governor Tom Wolf has been a huge disappointment, an incompetent political showboat. He has routinely tried to appease the wacko element of his constituency at the expense of good government. When he appointed the humorless John Quigley of PennFuture as DEP Secretary, that was the first sign of the Governor’s plan to demagogue first and govern later.

Now, Wolf is wasting time posturing in social media and elsewhere challenging EPA dumping of the politicized top-down EPA ozone rules adopted under President Obama. Meanwhile, actions that would simultaneously help Pennsylvania’s economy and make it possible to clean more air—things like permits for pipelines such as the Atlantic Sunrise—languish on the Pennsylvania DEP desk. What are we now; New York?

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