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Energy official toutes Trump policies

Policies under the Trump Administration are doing a lot to help the gas and oil industry, and that’s good news for the state of Pennsylania.

Thomas J. Pyle, president of the Institute for Energy Research, told Williamsport/Lycoming Chamber of Commerce members Wednesday that those polices include removing unnecessary regulations that strangle the industry.

That is in contrast to the Obama Adminstration, which seemed intent on over-regulating energy.

Among Trump’s moves has been to rescind the Environmental Protection Agency’s Clean Power Plan.

It’s real purpose was not so much to protect the environment but to nudge the nation toward renewable energy, according to Pyle.

“Renewable energy has a place,” he said, but not when the government steps in to make it happen.

Pyle said the demand for natural gas is high with the state at the “forefront of that vanguard.”

With drilling of the Marcellus Shale, the state is in a position it could not have imagined 15 years ago.

A number of nations are dependent on U.S. exports of natural gas.

Unfortunately, he said, the demand for natural gas is not embraced wholeheartedly.

He noted Pennsylvania’s neighbor, New York, continues to have in place a moratorium on natural gas drilling.

New England, meanwhile, does not have the pipeline capacity to meet its gas demand.

Pyle said imposing a natural gas severance tax on drilling would drive up the costs of business for drilling in the state.

“The margins are thin,” he said. “If companies can go somewhere else, they will.”

Meanwhile, Pyle noted that coal remains an important energy resource.

“Pennsylvania remains the number three (coal) producer in the U.S.,” he said.

Pyle called for continued “sensible policies” from the Trump Administration that support the energy industry.

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