Boston Gets More Gas and It’s Not the Beans! Really!

Jim Willis
Editor & Publisher, Marcellus Drilling News (MDN)


Boston will get a lot lot more gas soon and not from those Boston beans. It will be as a result of a Kinder Morgan pipeline upgrade fought by its idiot pols.

Among a flurry of new approvals, last Thursday the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) gave final approval to Tennessee Gas Pipeline’s “261 Upgrade” project–a project to build approximately 2.1 miles of 12-inch diameter pipeline loop and replace two older, less efficient compressor units with a single new and more efficient compressor unit at the location of Compressor Station 261 in Agawam, Massachusetts.


The 261 Upgrade work would result in an extra 72 million cubic feet per day (MMcf/d) of natural gas flowing to the Boston metro region. This project is about as benign and small as they get as far as earth disturbance. Yet these small changes will yield a big, beneficial outcome for Boston residents.

And yet, the state of Massachusetts tried to slow it down/block it (see Massachusetts Throws Up Roadblocks for Pipeline Expansion). When that didn’t work, the state’s radical Attorney General, Maura Healey, tried to tell FERC what it can/can’t do with respect to approving the project (see Out-of-Control Mass. AG Tries to Block More NatGas to Boston). What an arrogant lot in the Bay State.

Fortunately, FERC didn’t listen to the state nor to Healey.

Kinder Morgan (owner of TGP) plans to begin construction in March 2020 for the looping part of the project, and in May 2020 for the horsepower replacement part of the project.

FERC’s final approval for the 261 Upgrade project, issued last Thursday and here’s the decision.

Editor’s NoteWhat’s especially interesting about this FERC decision to allow gas to reach Boston, which previously had to rely on Russian LNG in an at least one instance, are the thoroughly ridiculous arguments of project opponents.

The City of Holyoke, for example, said it “intends to utilize existing infrastructure and energy conservation initiatives to meet future heating needs in order to obtain 100 percent renewable energy” and, therefore, there is no need for the upgrade. FERC simply responded by noting “Renewable energy sources would not accomplish the project purpose of providing natural gas transportation service. The Commission cannot require individual energy users to use different or specific energy resources.” FERC’s can’t impose Holyoke’s green religion, in other words.

Then, there is FERC Commissioner Richard Glick, who dissented in part by saying “We know with certainty what causes climate change: It is the result of GHG emissions, including carbon dioxide and methane, released in large quantities through the production, transportation, and the consumption of fossil fuels, including natural gas.”

This is nonsense. Not only are there literally thousands of credible scientists who are not certain at all, but, as Judith Curry notes, the IPCC itself has but claimed “Most [50%] of the warming in the latter half of the 20th century is very likely [>90%] due to the observed increase in greenhouse gas concentrations.” Even accepting these obvious guesstimates, this would mean GHH emissions account for less than half of global warming, not a certainty they cause all of it.

Glick was deliberately trying to create the opposite impression, which he had to know wasn’t true. There are many, many potential contributors to global warming and to stop a pipeline project based on, at best, a less than 50% certainty it might somehow increase warming is ludicrous. Thank goodness the other FERC Commissioners saw through this political stunt.

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10 thoughts on “Boston Gets More Gas and It’s Not the Beans! Really!

  1. this is a small project and just replacing with upgrades to what is there already.

    Boston suburbs saw horrible pipeline explosions about a year ago and should be careful with increased dependence on gas.
    this disaster happened north of Boston in 2018.

    And interesting that Tom admits Russian gas was used only once in that area in a crisis and hasn’t been used since.

    FERC approved this small project.
    There is still much opposition by the State and residents.

    Guess Tom and Jim will be happy with any tidbit in their direction.

    Alternative energy sources and electric cars continue to advance in the marketplace and in research.

    See the latest electric cars even by Porsche.

    • And, what do electric cars run on but natural gas since most electricity is made with it unless you prefer coal or nuclear. Solar and wind can’t do it because both are intermittent and horribly uneconomic unless you ignore subsidies and even then…

      Sadly, you have much to learn, Vera.

          • I merely said “you’re living in a child-like dream world” if you believe solar and wind powered electric cars are the answer and that is undeniably true, Stan. It’s not about you but, rather, what you believe that is not true.

  2. It’s hard to believe that Vera is still blathering her anti-gas dogma. Natural gas has in fact been a great boon to the country offering a low cost, low polluting,
    and reliable fuel. There are parts of the country – especially in the NY area – which will be experiencing shortages because of dogma like hers.

  3. Glad to hear, Fred, that your actually “blathering” and admitting that Fracked Gas is polluting …

    Happy New Year to all.

    Hope the pro-gassers won’t get too disappointed when their dreams and visions of gas everywhere are not realized especially in New York….in the coming year.

  4. Pingback: Eastern Shore Will Get More Marcellus Shale Gas from NortheastNatural Gas Now

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