Houston Chronicle recently published an opinion piece by Bill Godsey, former geologist for the Texas Railroad Commission, highlighting two executive orders recently signed by President Trump seeking to promote and streamline energy infrastructure development. Godsey points to the thriving Permian Basin and the Marcellus Shale formations as major production areas that will benefit from further pipeline development in order to efficiently transport product. Godsey also emphasizes the importance of President Trump’s executive orders, noting:
Important and deserving infrastructure projects that have already won approval at the state and federal levels still face lengthy delays, as opponents of oil and gas development have weaponized legal and regulatory frameworks to create nearly impassable barriers to construction. Trump’s orders will bring an end to that practice, and we can look to Texas to understand why that’s a good thing not only for the energy industry but also for our economy, the environment, and our future as an energy exporter.
Godsey points out that the Permian Basin has been able to lead the nation’s energy boom as new Texas pipelines continue to improve access to the Gulf – “making it easier and more cost-effective to connect our world-leading liquefied natural gas and natural gas resources to domestic and international markets.”
The op-ed also points out that an extensive pipeline network will help us to protect the environment – pipelines are the safest and most reliable method to transport oil and gas. They have drastically stronger safety records, and are more environmentally-friendly than the alternative of transport by truck or rail.
Godsey concludes by underscoring the important role of natural gas in American energy production, noting that pipelines are key to the fuel’s emerging success, writing:
Expanded pipeline infrastructure will also accelerate the entry of natural gas into our power grid. That should be good news for the environment because as natural gas’ share of the power mix grows, it will result in cleaner emissions and make up for the deficit in generating capacity created by the loss of coal plants that have been shut in.
Natural gas is primarily responsible for our nation’s position as a global leader in reducing greenhouse gas emissions. Increased use of natural gas has replaced a large portion of coal in power generation, reducing carbon dioxide emissions from electricity generation in the U.S. to below their 1990 levels, with the EPA reporting that overall U.S. carbon emissions are at their lowest level since 1992. Natural gas producers are also rapidly decreasing methane emissions, even amid an extended period of increasing production.
Pipeline infrastructure is too important to our nation’s future to the victim of anti-energy interests. Trump’s executive orders will break the logjam that’s weighed on the energy sector for years —a big step forward for our nation’s energy future.