NEWS

VEGAS WATER SUMMIT

Las Vegas, NV—Colorado Governor John Hickenlooper and Arizona Governor Doug Ducey are in the dry, thirsty desert headlining a summit dealing with the region’s most important resource…water.  In addition to government officials, the event, sponsored by the Israel-America Chamber of Commerce brings together water experts and business leaders from the United States and Israel.  Trends, risks and solutions to water issues are among the subjects being covered.  EPA Administrator Gina McCarthy and Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel are also scheduled to speak at the conference.

JORDAN COVE PIPELINE SHOT DOWN AGAIN

Coos Bay, OR—Strike two for the Jordan Cove Pipeline.  The Federal Energy Regulatory Commission refused to reconsider the pipeline that would ship liquid natural gas from the Piceance Basin to Coos Bay, Oregon for the energy-starved Pacific Rim nations.  The ruling by FERC was based on the same reasoning as it’s March 11th decision that concluded there was no evidence to support the need for a pipeline and not enough public benefit.  Michael Hinrichs is the spokesman for the Jordan Cove pipeline.  He says the board’s reasoning is unfounded.  He says Japan is ready to sign a contract to buy liquid natural gas or LNG for the next 20 years and beyond.   Hinrichs hopes when President-elect Trump takes office next month, a more responsible, reasonable board will be appointed.  He says the first order of business should be filling the two empty seats on the FERC board.  Despite assurances that every safety precaution has been addressed regarding the shipment of LNG, Hinrichs says it’s been difficult trying to convince private landowners and environmental groups otherwise.

SYNTHETIC GAS PLANT PROPOSED FOR WESTERN SLOPE

PAONIA—A plan to produce synthetic gas from coal waste is in the works on the western slope.  Bowie Resources of Paonia is looking to build a coal gasification plant at it’s Number 2 Mine but until a few questions are answered.  The Colorado Division of Mining, Reclamation and Safety will hold a public hearing on the project.  Environmentalists, local residents and regulators say there are too many facets to the project and a lot of unanswered questions.

ENERGY-RELATED GRANTS ON THE DECLINE

Grand Junction—There will be fewer government grants next year for Colorado communities because of the oil and gas drilling nosedive.  Things have gotten so bad, the Colorado Department of Local Affairs has canceled the second grant application cycle. DOLA Director Irv Halter says local governments that rely on severance tax-generated grants will have more time to prioritize needs before the next application deadline on February 1st.  Severance tax revenue is expected to plummet over 40 percent by June 30th, the end of the fiscal year.  By 2018, revenue from oil and gas drilling is projected to be around 163 million dollars, down from 300 million in 2008.