Our nation’s top energy regulator and an independent grid watchdog rebuked efforts to shut down the Everett Marine Liquified Natural Gas (LNG) Terminal in New England.
Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) Chairman Willie L. Phillips and North American Electric Reliability Corporation (NERC) CEO James B. Robb wrote how closing this natural gas terminal would impact “reliability and affordability of the region’s energy supplies” during the winter months.
Their joint statement reads, “With respect to the natural gas system, we recognize that the reliability needs turn, at least for the foreseeable future, largely on facilities subject to the New England states’ jurisdiction.”
In July 2023, Eversource Energy—one of two regional energy companies relying on the Everett Marine LNG Terminal to supply gas to their customers—warned the Massachusetts Department of Public Utilities about closing the facility down. The Everett Terminal, it noted, often steps in as a critical “reserve” gas resource to Harvard University, MIT, Tufts University, Biogen, Novartis, Pfizer, Shire Pharmaceuticals, Broad Institute, Whitehead Institute, Draper Labs, and Mass General Brigham Healthcare System through supply agreements it maintains with NSTAR Gas Company.
Most Americans are unaware that the Everett Terminal receives 99% of all U.S. imports of liquified natural gas (LNG). However, the Massachusetts state government says “economic factors” could result in the facility’s closure in 2024.
New England households, as a whole, primarily heat their homes with utility gas (39.3%) and heating oil like kerosene (32.7%)—followed by electricity (15.6%), liquified petroleum (7.7%) and wood (2.8%).
In March 2022, I praised FERC here on IWF’s website for not adopting flawed environmental justice and climate considerations for new natural gas projects:
This announcement reverses course from a February decision that critics contend would have stalled new construction of natural gas pipelines and liquefied natural gas (LNG) terminals.
Following opposition from a bipartisan group of lawmakers and energy industry players and the war in Ukraine, the agency reversed its decision last week by a unanimous vote. Going forward, FERC’s new policy ‘is now labeled as a draft and would apply only to projects filed after FERC finalizes the policy statements.’ Moreover, the agency used this opportunity to announce three new pipeline projects.
Energy security and grid stability can be ensured by continued production and consumption of coal, oil, and natural gas—especially as more governments pursue and greenlight fossil fuel projects.To learn more about FERC and natural gas, go HERE.