rainn.png
Tuesday October 15th, 2019 7:13AM

Trump to sign orders making it harder to block pipelines

By The Associated Press
Related Articles
  Contact Editor

SAN ANTONIO (AP) — President Donald Trump's support for shifting more power to states took a back seat Wednesday to his affinity for oil and gas production as he aimed to make it harder for states to block pipelines and other energy projects due to environmental concerns.

At the urging of business groups, Trump was to sign two executive orders designed to speed up oil and gas pipeline projects. The action comes after officials in Washington state and New York used the permitting process to stop new energy projects in recent years.

His administration insisted that it was not trying to take power away from the states but, rather, trying to make sure that state actions follow the intent of the Clean Water Act.

Less than a week ago, nearly a dozen business groups told EPA Administrator Andrew Wheeler that the environmental review and permitting process for energy projects "has become a target for environmental activists and states that oppose the production and use of fossil fuels."

The groups said in an April 5 letter that individual states shouldn't be able to use provisions of the Clean Water Act "to dictate national policy, thereby harming other states and the national interest and damaging cooperative federalism."

Washington state blocked the building of a coal terminal in 2017, saying there were too many major harmful impacts including air pollution, rail safety and vehicle traffic.

New York regulators stopped a natural gas pipeline, saying it failed to meet standards to protect streams, wetlands and other water resources. Under a section of the law, companies must get certification from the state before moving ahead with an energy project.

One of Trump's planned executive orders calls for the EPA to consult with states, tribes and others before issuing new guidance and rules for states on how to comply with the law.

Environmental groups described Trump's order as an effort to short-circuit a state's ability to review complicated projects, putting at risk a state's ability to protect drinking water supplies and wildlife.

"The Trump administration's proposal would trample on state authority to protect waters within their own borders," said Jim Murphy, senior counsel for the National Wildlife Federation.

The private Center for Biological Diversity said the orders would mark the fourth time Trump has used taken such steps to streamline permits for fossil-fuel infrastructure.

"Trump's developing an addiction to executive orders that rubber-stamp these climate-killing projects," said Brett Hartl, government affairs director at the center.

Trump was to sign the orders while visiting the International Union of Operating Engineers International Training and Education Center, a union-run facility in Crosby, northeast of Houston.

Trade groups representing the oil and gas industry applauded the orders and said greater access to natural gas benefits families and the environment.

"When states say 'no' to the development of natural gas pipelines, they force utilities to curb safe and affordable service and refuse access to new customers including new businesses," said Karen Harbert, president and CEO at the American Gas Association.

Trump's order would direct the transportation secretary to propose a rule allowing liquefied natural gas to be shipped in approved rail tank cars and the labor secretary to review whether investment fund managers who invest based on social goals are fulfilling their responsibility to maximize shareholder returns.

The second executive order would ease the process for energy projects that cross international borders.

Currently, the secretary of state has the authority to issue permits for cross-border infrastructure such as pipelines. The executive order clarifies that the president will make the decision on whether to issue such permits.

The move follows Trump's decision last month to issue a new presidential permit for the long-stalled Keystone XL oil pipeline — two years after he first approved it and more than a decade after it was first proposed.

Trump was signing the orders in between campaign fundraisers in San Antonio and Houston.

____

Freking reported from Washington. Associated Press writers Richard Lardner and Matthew Daly in Washington contributed to this report.

  • Associated Categories: Associated Press (AP), AP National News, AP Online National News, Top U.S. News short headlines, Top General short headlines, AP Online Headlines - Washington, AP Business, AP Business - Industries, AP Business - Utilities
© Copyright 2019 AccessWDUN.com
All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed without permission.
Barr says 'I think spying did occur' on Trump campaign
Attorney General William Barr is making his way to Capitol Hill for a second straight day and is expected to be quizzed further about special counsel Robert Mueller's Russia report
3:06PM ( 3 minutes ago )
Trump to sign orders making it harder to block pipelines
President Donald Trump's support for states' rights is taking a backseat Wednesday to his affinity for oil and gas production
3:06PM ( 4 minutes ago )
Charles Van Doren, figure in game show scandals, dies at 93
Charles Van Doren, the central figure in the TV game show scandals of the late 1950s, has died at 93
3:01PM ( 8 minutes ago )
Associated Press (AP)
Blizzard warnings posted from Colorado to Minnesota
Blizzard warnings are posted from Colorado to Minnesota as a storm develops that could rival last month's bomb cyclone
2:32PM ( 37 minutes ago )
Anti-opioid addiction drug maker charged with fraud
Federal prosecutors in Virginia say the company that makes a Suboxone strips to curb opioid addiction has been lying for years about the relative safety of its product
2:28PM ( 41 minutes ago )
Heartbeat abortion ban bill nears final OK in Ohio
No topic seemed off limits as abortion-rights supporters in Ohio fought the latest _ and perhaps last _ battle over a twice-vetoed heartbeat abortion ban, which appears poised this time to be signed into law.
2:14PM ( 55 minutes ago )
AP National News
The Latest: Gantz's party concedes defeat in Israel election
Israel's Blue and White party leaders are conceding defeat in Israel's election, saying they will work against Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu from the opposition
1:12PM ( 1 hour ago )
May to ask EU for Brexit delay, Macron says no guarantee
Just two days away from a potentially calamitous no-deal Brexit, European Union leaders are discussing granting the United Kingdom a delay of up to a year to its departure from the bloc
12:48PM ( 2 hours ago )
Bernie Sanders unveils his new 'Medicare for All' plan
Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders reveals a new version of his "Medicare for All" plan, shaking up the 2020 presidential campaign by reopening the debate over his call to eliminate private health insurance
12:21PM ( 2 hours ago )
AP Online National News
Most Fed officials see rates staying on hold for all of 2019
Majority of Fed officials believe Fed could keep rates unchanged for all of 2019
2:27PM ( 42 minutes ago )
US budget deficit running 15% higher than a year ago
US budget deficit in March running 15% higher than a year ago
2:15PM ( 54 minutes ago )
Democrats want feds to target the 'black box' of AI bias
Congress is starting to show interest in prying open the "black box" of tech companies' artificial intelligence much the same way the federal government checks under car hoods and audits banks
2:00PM ( 1 hour ago )
AP Business
Western banks help Saudis raise $12 billion in bonds
Saud Arabia's oil company has raised $12 billion in a bond issue that shows Western investors are keen to do business with the kingdom despite the scandal over the killing of a dissident journalist.
12:53PM ( 2 hours ago )
Trump: It's up to Cain to move ahead with Fed nomination
Trump: It's up to Cain to move forward with Fed board nomination
12:23PM ( 2 hours ago )
US consumer prices rose 0.4% in March on higher gas costs
US consumer prices climbed 0.4% in March on higher costs for gasoline, electricity and shelter
11:46AM ( 3 hours ago )
AP Business - Industries
Japan lifts evacuation in parts of Fukushima plant hometown
Japan has partially lifted an evacuation order in one of the two hometowns of the tsunami-wrecked Fukushima nuclear plant for the first time
11:25PM ( 15 hours ago )
US lawmakers seek to protect national park in New Mexico
Members of New Mexico's congressional delegation are renewing a call for the creation of a formal buffer around a national park held sacred by Native Americans
6:48PM ( 20 hours ago )
Putin outlines ambitious Arctic expansion program
President Vladimir Putin has put forward an ambitious program to secure Russia's foothold in the Arctic, including efforts to build new ports and other infrastructure facilities and expand an icebreaker fleet
12:52PM ( 1 day ago )
AP Business - Utilities
Barr says 'I think spying did occur' on Trump campaign
Attorney General William Barr is making his way to Capitol Hill for a second straight day and is expected to be quizzed further about special counsel Robert Mueller's Russia report
3:06PM ( 3 minutes ago )
Charles Van Doren, figure in game show scandals, dies at 93
Charles Van Doren, the central figure in the TV game show scandals of the late 1950s, has died at 93
3:01PM ( 8 minutes ago )
Science fact: Astronomers reveal first image of a black hole
Humanity has gotten its first glimpse of a black hole, and it looks like a flaming doughnut
2:58PM ( 11 minutes ago )
The Latest: Spring storm impacting ground and air travel
A storm bringing heavy snow and strong winds to several Rockies and Plains states is making travel difficult in many areas and impossible in others
2:55PM ( 14 minutes ago )
Trump says he won't deliver tax returns to Congress
President Donald Trump is facing an imminent congressional deadline for his administration to provide his tax returns but he says he "won't do it" while he's under audit by the IRS.
2:46PM ( 23 minutes ago )