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Court Ruling Scrutinizes FERC Pipeline Approval

The Court decision has so far inclined towards declining the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission approval for a pre-existing and operating natural gas pipeline.The agency reconsiders its process for determining future needs associated with the interstate lines. The Washington D.C. appellate Court dismissed the approval on the account that FERC has failed to justify its purpose adequately and balance public benefits along with the adverse impact of the 65-mile long Spire STL Pipeline, a project worth $287 million.The project witnessed a backlash with the new need for natural gas in the region and anticipates flat demand for the next twenty years.

The utilities player Sprite Inc. had pursued necessary arrangements with the natural gas shippers, distributors, and developers, but all of the company’s efforts were in vain, and received zero response. Following the substantial networking effort, the company landed an agreement with its affiliate Sprite Missouri attaining 87.5% of the pipeline’s capacity.

Court Ruling Scrutinizes FERC Pipeline ApprovalRather than building up new capacity, the company now utilizes its two-year-old pipeline for transporting the product.The Court was concerned with the emergence of credible evidence indicating self-dealing, which the Missouri Public Service Commission addressed with much skepticism regarding the need for the project. Thus the issue landed on to FERC for a review. The Court assessed that the FERC’s order consisted of severe deficiencies, according to Natalie Karas, senior director at Environmental Defense Fund, which challenged FERC’s order.

The American Petroleum Institute suggested to FERC that establishing a revised policy is a must in explaining a transparent approach that will allow the natural gas industry to provide reliable supply continually.

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