Your editorial Sunday July 5, “A land rush on pipelines,” addressed an issue that needs more attention.
Your closing question — “If we have three pipelines starting in about the same place and generally headed in the same direction, shouldn’t somebody look at them all together?” — seems to be hanging out there unattended.
Who is going to do it? The Federal Energy Regulatory Commission is not; it's dead set on evaluating these pipelines separately. That is the only way it knows.
Why shouldn’t we step back a notch and look at the fracking industry? After all, this is the industry that spawned this land rush on pipelines.
FERC has said that the fracking industry is outside its jurisdiction. The federal government has failed to regulate this industry and left oversight up to the states. So, in effect, it is also hanging out there unattended.
Shouldn’t somebody be looking for a reliable estimate of the lifespan of the economical retrievable natural gas remaining in these shale deposits, particularly the Marcellus? There is a wide range of estimated life spans out there, some just a few years and most less than the projected useful life of the pipelines.
Are we willing to allow these pipelines and the resulting devastation to our planet for just a few years of corporate profits? Then what?
Another issue of concern is the apparent unspoken national goal of this country to extract as much as we can of our remaining underground natural resources and ship them overseas. Is this not the course taken by many third world nations, which has led to the impoverishment of many of them? Is this what we want?