GAIN Coalition Hosts Virtual Panel Discussing Critical Energy Topics, Sen. Kevin Cramer Gives Remarks

This past week, leaders from the Grow America’s Infrastructure Now Coalition met virtually with U.S. Senator Kevin Cramer of North Dakota and other energy and economic experts from across the state. Topics included the Biden administration’s failing energy policies, domestic oil & gas production, the need for increased energy infrastructure, American energy independence, and much more. 

The virtual panel began with remarks from Sen. Cramer, who shared his concerns about the federal government worsening inflation and threatening U.S. energy independence through Biden’s anti-energy policies. Talking about Biden’s call to OPEC to increase production and support the Russian pipeline Nord Stream 2, Sen. Kevin Cramer clearly stated:

“It’s bad for our economy, bad for our security, and bad for our environment.”

Sen. Cramer continued on to vocalize his support for the Dakota Access Pipeline and other energy infrastructure development. When asked about ongoing court cases involving the Dakota Access Pipeline, the senator said that investors in the Bakken should feel comfortable about the pipeline’s progress. In conclusion, Sen. Cramer asserted that fossil fuels will remain useful in years to come as our nation seeks to gain back our energy independence. 

In the next portion of the virtual GAIN panel, industry experts Ron Ness, president of the North Dakota Petroleum Council; Arik Spencer, president and CEO of the Greater North Dakota Chamber; and Ret. Army Major Gen. Spider Marks answered questions moderated by GAIN spokesman Craig Stevens. 

“I think there is no question that the greatest threat to our nation’s energy today is when you wake up every day and the federal government, in all of their actions and steps, want to tax you, want to shut you down, and want to limit your access to capital,” said Ron Ness, North Dakota Petroleum Council president.

The conversation went on to cover topics such as carbon capture projects, North Dakota oil and gas projects, and how the state’s energy sector supports U.S. national security. Gen. Marks asserted that the Biden administration should focus on minimizing vulnerabilities by strengthening U.S. energy capabilities: 

“We’ve learned through the COVID pandemic that we are a very connected, interconnected, interdependent world, almost to a degree of risk,” said Marks. “We have to moderate that risk, we’ve got to be able to maintain our independence.”

Throughout the panel, the reasoning and talking points of each distinguished guest came back to one common consensus: America needs more energy infrastructure and continued development of our natural resources.

Female pipeliner had career swept from underneath her by Biden’s energy policies

Today, FOX Business published an opinion piece by Jamie Landis, a newly-retired welder’s helper for Pipeliners Local Union 798 who worked in the industry from 1986 until 2021. Landis, based in Bald Knob, Arkansas, recently retired after 35 years due to President Biden’s detrimental energy policies.

Working in and around the oil and gas pipeline industry was second-nature for Landis, seeing that her husband and son have worked on pipelines all of their lives as well. In a sphere that is predominantly male-driven, Landis paved her way as a leading female in the field as one of the first women to join the Pipeliners Local Union 798.

After more than three decades of building our nation’s energy infrastructure, she is proud of the important progress that our country made in regards to energy independence, affordability, and increasing access to American natural resources. That was until the Biden Administration’s policies began to undermine American energy development, putting Landis and thousands of other pipeliners out of a job.  

Landis provides firsthand accounts reflecting on her time in the industry, emphasizing that pipelines are the safest, most efficient method to transport oil and gas and strengthen American energy independence:

“For example, I worked on the Dakota Access Pipeline that stretches 1,172 miles across the Dakotas to Illinois, pumping over 750,000 barrels of oil per day, more than 180,000 barrels compared to earlier this year.

Since we completed the project, DAPL has safely operated for four years. However, fringe activists continue to advocate for its shut down.

Despite the protests and vocal opposition, these groups are in the minority, as evidenced by a recent nationwide poll commissioned by the GAIN Coalition and performed by co/Efficient, which found that 8 out of 10 Americans believe that safely operating pipelines should remain active and in use.”

Landis concludes with this key passage:

“The United States has the necessary resources to be energy secure rather than being dependent on international suppliers. However, in order to change our current alarming trajectory, policymakers should prioritize our nation and its workers like my family, who are determined to continue building the necessary infrastructure to deliver reliable and affordable energy to the American people.”

Climate Change Activists, or Hypocrites?

One Michigander is looking to hold climate change activists accountable. Randy Boettjer, of Holland, MI, recently penned a letter in the Holland Sentinel in response to a column authored by two official observers of COP26 in Glasgow.

In his letter, Boettjer calls on climate activists to put their money where their mouth is and cut ties with fossil fuels. But as is made evident through his letter, it is nearly impossible to do so – which is the whole point. Boettjer writes:

Perhaps they could live the next year without using those dirty fossil fuels and come back next year and tell how they did. Of course, they won’t be able to take any more of those plane trips or heat their homes powered by those dirty fossil fuels. No more car trips in fuel-powered cars, or charging their electric vehicles from power plants that use fossil fuels. And they won’t be able to buy solar panels made without fossil fuels as they don’t exist. And of course, they can’t use anything made of plastic from those nasty fossil fuels, that includes phones and computers.

Instead of telling us how we should live our lives, why don’t these climate commandos first invent and prove a way of life that doesn’t depend on fossil fuels for living. Then they can talk about life without fossil fuels. Until then, they’re just hypocrites (do as I say, not as I do). There’s a reason God created this Earth abundant with fossil fuels.

Here’s some climate truth: Besides the regular flights, 118 private jets were used to fly people to and from the climate conference. Why do the attendees feel it’s OK for them to pollute the world, while they demean everyday people for living their lives?

Environment and climate activists should approach these issues with a realistic mindset and pragmatic timeline. While invested in renewables is vital and an “all of the above” energy strategy is key to long-term growth, the reality is that oil and gas will continue to play a critical role in our modern way of life and economy for the foreseeable future.

EIA: New Natural Gas Pipeline Capacity Expands Access to Export and Northeast Markets

The U.S. Energy Information Administration recently estimated over 4 billion cubic feet per day of new natural gas pipeline capacity entered service in the third quarter of 2021, primarily supplying Gulf Coast and Northeast demand markets.

EIA highlights several new projects:

Gulf Coast Region

  • The Whistler pipeline, completed on July 1, 2021. The new 2.0 Bcf/d pipeline, constructed by NextEra, connects Permian Basin production at the Waha Hub in West Texas to the Agua Dulce Hub in Southeast Texas. The Agua Dulce Hub serves as the supply point for several pipelines that cross the border to supply demand markets in Mexico.
  • The Acadiana Expansion Project, partly completed as of August 6, 2021. This 894 million cubic feet per day (MMcf/d) expansion on the Kinder Morgan Louisiana intrastate pipeline increases takeaway capacity out of the Haynesville Basin, connecting it to the Sabine Pass LNG terminal. The project is expected to be completed in early 2022.
  • The Cameron Extension Project, partly completed as of August 12, 2021. This 750 MMcf/d expansion on the Texas Eastern Transmission (TETCO) interstate pipeline delivers feedgas to the Calcasieu Pass LNG terminal, which is currently preparing to start commissioning activities. The project is expected to be completed by the end of this year.

Northeast

  • The 261 Upgrade Projects completed its second and final phase, entering service on October 6, 2021. With the new, upgraded compressor at Station 261, an estimated 20 MMcf/d of additional natural gas supply can be delivered by the Tennessee Gas Pipeline (TGP) into New England.
  • Portland Natural Gas Transmission System’s (PNGTS) Westbrook Xpress Project, Phases 2 and 3, entered service on October 21, 2021, increasing natural gas pipeline import capacity from Canada at Pittsburg, New Hampshire, by 81 MMcf/d. The new Westbrook compressor station in Westbrook, Maine, will increase capacity on the co-operated Maritimes Northeast pipeline by 50 MMcf/d.

This increased pipeline capacity is key to safely and efficiently transporting natural gas to consumer markets – a fuel that is key to providing affordable, reliable energy for both U.S. consumers and our allies around the globe. It has also been recognized as an important driver in reducing carbon emissions from the electricity sector.

Proposed Carbon Capture Pipeline Offers Midwest Economic Promise, Reduced Carbon Emissions

This past week, the Bismarck Tribune reported on the Midwest Carbon Express pipeline that would capture and transport as much as 12 million metric tons of carbon dioxide per year. Pipeline developer Summit Carbon Solutions reports that this would equate to removing the annual carbon emissions of 2.6 million cars.

The pipeline aiming to gather carbon dioxide produced by 31 ethanol plants across the Midwest is slated to inject the gas underground in Oliver and Mercer counties. This makes the ethanol from these Midwestern producers more feasible to sell to markets along the West Coast that have enacted policies that promote low-carbon fuels as a means of addressing climate change.

With its sheer size and perceived direct and indirect benefit the Midwest Carbon Express will bring, North Dakota officials and landowners are welcoming the project. “What I hear consistently from landowners is strong support for the project,” [Wade Boeshans, Executive Vice President of Summit Carbon Solutions] said. “They understand the value of it.”

Just as the Dakota Access Pipeline has served as an economic stimulant for the state since its inception, the Midwest Carbon Express is expected to create as many as 17,000 construction jobs and support up to 500 permanent jobs, according to Summit. The company is aiming to start construction in the second quarter of 2023 and begin operations in the second quarter of 2024.

Former Energy Secretary Perry: Biden ‘Literally Experimenting With America’s Future’

This past week, CNS News reported on Ex-Energy Secretary Rick Perry’s comments regarding the current state of America’s energy crisis. 

After current Energy Secretary Jennifer Granholm asserted that heating prices will rise this winter because of current gas/power prices, Perry has made it known that this could have been avoided. 

Perry leans heavily on the importance of pipelines and the jobs that are brought by such large energy infrastructure pieces like the Keystone XL pipeline. Perry was blunt with his assertions: 

“So I mean, they are doing an experiment on us right now, and this is like a chemistry lab gone bad. They are literally experimenting with America’s future with these crazy ideas of shutting down pipelines because they’re having to address the Green New Deal and the AOCs of the world.”

Perry went on to note that just last year, America was energy independent. “We were exporting for the first time in, I think, 70 years,” he said. “And that’s what President Trump had asked me to do when he made the pitch to come and be in his Cabinet. He said, Perry, I want you to go and do for America what you did for Texas, and that’s exactly what we did.

Projects like Dakota Access, Line 3, and Line 5 are bringing reliable, affordable, accessible energy to Americans throughout the country. Investment in these projects and other critical infrastructure must be prioritized. If not, we’ll go down this experimental road of unstable economics, vulnerable national security, record-breaking inflation, and hopeless job markets.

EIA: Additional Transnational Pipeline Capacity Could Reduce Crude Shipped by Rail

The U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA) recently highlighted the role of new additional pipeline capacity in potentially reducing the amount of crude oil that is shipped via rail:

The Enbridge Line 3 replacement pipeline, which delivers crude oil from Edmonton, Alberta, in Canada to Superior, Wisconsin, became fully operational on October 1, 2021, increasing the pipeline’s capacity to 760,000 barrels per day (b/d). Before the replacement, Enbridge Line 3 had a capacity of about half that amount. Because the Line 3 replacement project increases the capacity to import crude oil by pipeline from Canada, this pipeline could reduce the need to ship crude oil from Canada by other modes, especially rail.

U.S. crude oil imports from Canada have gradually increased over time and made up more than 60% of total U.S. crude oil imports in 2020. Most of this crude oil from Canada comes into the United States by pipeline. Importing crude oil from Canada by rail is often more expensive than by pipeline, but crude oil producers and shippers in Canada sometimes ship crude oil by rail because of its destination flexibility or because the pipeline capacity is insufficient to support all of the crude oil imports from Canada.

Studies have shown that pipelines are the safest, most efficient, and most environmentally-conscious method of shipping oil and gas. Further, projects like Line 3 and Dakota Access are key to safely and affordably transporting the oil that fuels the U.S. economy while also strengthening U.S. energy security interests. Policymakers must continue to foster a regulatory environment that welcomes investment in critical energy infrastructure and development of North American energy resources.

GAIN Coalition takes on Texas to tour natural gas facilities

This past week, leaders from the Grow America’s Infrastructure Now Coalition took a trip down to Texas to visit Energy Transfer’s Nederland Export Terminal, the second-largest natural gas liquids (NGL) export facility in the world, and NET Power’s Zero Emissions Natural Gas Demonstration Power Plant. Present on the ground was GAIN spokesman Craig Stevens and GAIN’s strategic advisor, retired Major General James “Spider” Marks.

Media outlets such as Inside Sources, The Houston Chronicle, and Beaumont Enterprise covered the tour, reporting “while the technical talk focused on production capacity and job creation, their overall message was the value of domestic energy production in an era of international uncertainty and supply chain disruptions.”

While touring the Nederland Export Terminal, retired Maj. Gen. Marks said that while the facility produces energy, it is simultaneously generating a stronger shield of national security through heightening our national energy resources. “American energy independence is a national security priority,” the Iraq War veteran said.

“The increased production and export of U.S. NGLs and natural gas is key to bolstering American national security, energy independence, and our foreign policy interests at home and abroad,” said GAIN Coalition spokesman Craig Stevens. “Providing reliable, affordable fuels to our allies around the globe supports energy diversification, reduces carbon emissions, and strengthens the U.S. position in international affairs.”

Opponents of increased fossil fuel production argue that the risk from carbon emissions on the climate outweighs other geopolitical concerns. However, with new, innovative technology traditional fossil fuels can become net-neutral in terms of carbon emissions. Therefore, the US must prioritize these carbon-neutral sources of reliable, affordable energy like natural gas while renewables still can’t compete at the same level of effectiveness.

The tour concluded in Texas at the end of last week, and the GAIN Coalition expresses its gratitude to Energy Transfer for opening its doors. Vicki Granado, vice president for communications at Energy Transfer, said this is the first time the company has opened up its doors for a press tour like this.

“We thought it was a good opportunity for people to see what an important asset it is,” she said.

Armstrong Critical of Biden Administration Amid Ongoing Energy Crisis

This week, The Dickinson Press reported on GOP Rep. Kelly Armstrong’s comments at a recent press conference in Washington. Armstrong was joined by Republican Whip Steve Scalise and House Republican Conference Chair Elise Stefanik to talk about the Biden administration’s energy crisis. 

Armstrong spoke on the Biden administration’s roll backs of the Trump administration’s policies and the installment of domestically-targeted regulations that have taken down homegrown energy resources. 

“Make no mistake… this is self-induced,” Armstrong said. “This is created by the Biden administration and you can start from where we started. First day in office, they canceled the Keystone XL Pipeline with our closest trading partner, our neighbor to the north — Canada. Then we move across the Atlantic Ocean and help Vladimir Putin and greenlight Nord Stream. We pass regulations that make it absolutely hostile to develop minerals on federal lands. Then the Biden administration begs OPEC to open the pumps back up. It’s no secret why this is happening and this is before we pass one single thing in this $3.5 trillion reconciliation package.”

All of these factors added together make for a scary winter for most Americans trying to pay their bills:

“North Dakota is an energy powerhouse. We have got notice from two of our utilities that people are going to pay upwards of $150 to $200 more for their energy costs this winter,” Armstrong said. “When you say you are not taxing anybody who makes under $400,000 per year, people who are paying $200 more to heat their home in North Dakota in the winter will disagree with you.”

As Armstrong articulated well, we need more focus on supporting American-made, homegrown energy infrastructure and resources to sustain ourselves through crises such as the one we’re in. The Biden administration has continued to stifle domestic energy players while encouraging our adversaries abroad. Pipelines like the Dakota Access are not only critical to our national economy, but also to the financial wellbeing of everyday Americans.

GAIN Spokesman Craig Stevens: Mainstream Media Embrace Andreas Malm’s Environmental Extremism

Today, the Washington Times published an op-ed by GAIN spokesman Craig Stevens titled “Mainstream media embrace Andreas Malm’s environmental extremism.” In it, Stevens calls out the ‘domestic terrorists’ that are targeting our nation’s pipelines – and the mainstream media outlets that are providing them with a megaphone.

Unfortunately, skewing the facts and spreading misinformation is the new normal. The media coverage following the “People vs. Fossil Fuels” protest in mid-October was no exception; the violence and destruction it caused hardly made a single headline. The fringe activists starting their 5-day protest on Indigenous People’s Day crossed far over the line of “peaceful protesting.” Stevens accounts:

“As demonstrations in recent years have shown, many activists are willing to break the law to stop new projects or advocate for canceling those already operational, like the Dakota Access Pipeline (DAPL). Just this month, more than fifty protestors were arrested at the Department of Interior offices in Washington DC after forcibly gaining entry to the building, demanding to speak with Interior Secretary Deb Haaland – who wasn’t even in the District at the time. The unlawful protests left multiple officers injured, and at least one was transported to a nearby hospital.”

More unjustified aggression has come from anti-pipeline activists like Andreas Malm, who has literally written a book titled “How to Blow Up a Pipeline.” And no one is blinking an eye at this malicious call for violence and illegal activity? In Steven’s piece, he goes on to outline Malm’s and other actors’ maligned, unlawful agendas. He ends with this key passage:

“To encourage violence that could jeopardize the physical safety and financial security of these hard-working men and women– not to mention nearby residents and innocent bystanders– is unconscionable. Equally unconscionable are media organizations that provide instigators, like Mr. Malm, a megaphone to spew violent rhetoric and promote unlawful acts. If they continue to do so, they should find themselves sharing the spotlight with Facebook under the glare of the Department of Justice and the Federal Communications Commission.”


 [CG1]Link to op-ed please