Now you’re (not) cooking with gas

A New York utility says the politically arranged blockage of a pipeline project may mean an end to new gas hookups for residential and commercial customers [Bernadette Hogan and Ben Feuerherd, New York Post]

A demand for “no new fossil fuel infrastructure” seems to be rapidly emerging from the green wing of world politics (Seattle, IEA, Vermont, Maryland, New York, earlier), making clear that its objection is not to a particular pipeline or fracking project or oilfield development or export terminal but to any and all of them, period.

I wonder whether the demand, if taken seriously, would also entail disallowing new gasoline stations.

More/related: strangling the New York power grid [Robert Bryce, Crain’s New York Business]


  • So, fossil fuels are evil and cannot continue. Have those pushing for the end of the pipeline and other infrastructure disconnected their homes and offices? If it is so important they could lead the way by ceasing to use fossil fuels in their own lives, including electricity created with fossil fuel.

  • They want zero growth, but the population IS growing (by illegal immigrants if by nothing else) and these new people need gas. If you prevent new gas hookups you will stop construction immediately and rent prices will soar. duh
    NASA top scientist James Hansen famously demanded all coal plants be shut down immediately with no plan for “what then”. This is typical. Radical action that wrecks the economy. They hate civilization and wealth. They value nature above human lives.

  • Same group also wants more affordable housing, fueled somehow by affordable energy obtained without use of wind power (can’t have unsightly towers visible to rich folks on the coast), or nuclear (eeekk, radioactive). That leaves solar power, good for all of 5 hours per day on average in that part of the country.

  • And they’re proud of it.
    “The city of Berkeley will no longer allow natural gas pipes in many new buildings starting Jan. 1, 2020. It’s the first city in California to pass such a law, officials said.”
    Not all natural gas/methane is fossil derived.

  • This week the city of Berkeley, CA banned natural gas hookups for new construction. The city council vote was unanimous. It also had the support of Pacific Gas & Electric, the utility that provides natural gas to Berkeley and most of northern CA.

    PG&E supported the ban because profit margins for electricity are much higher than those for natural gas.

    The city of Berkeley claims that the ban will lead to an all-electric infrastructure, to decrease greenhouse gas emission: the CO2 from burning natural gas.

    The question of how the natural gas turbines that generate electricity will be prevented from emitting CO2 was not considered. Nor were the energy inefficiencies of burning natural gas to generate electricity, then transmitting the electricity from generators to homes.

    The ban will cause a net increase greenhouse gas emissions. But it will move the CO2 emission from broad geographic distribution (individual buildings) to point sources (electricity generation plants). It is a excellent example of hybrid NIMBY and virtue-signaling legislation that will increase the evil that its proponents claim to prevent.

    • Since California is importing more and more of its electricity from outside the state, that becomes somebody else’s problem.

  • From the headline I thought this was going to be about another round of protests to gas and oil pipeline projects.

    Since pipeline protests, if successful, force the gas or oil to be moved in rail tank cars, which have a much higher rate of spillage than pipelines, I wonder if they can be held liable for damages and/or forced to file environmental impact statements and pay for mitigation efforts. That would, on net, actually protect the environment.

    • Since pipeline protests, if successful, force the gas or oil to be moved in rail tank cars, which have a much higher rate of spillage than pipelines

      And, of course, also increase the energy costs of moving the gas/oil, since the tank cars need to be moved as well, as opposed to just moving the gas/oil itself. Yet another net increase in harm to the environment.