Hoeven to FERC Chair: Take the Handcuffs off Domestic Energy Producers

Senator Presses FERC to Empower Energy Production, Provide Certainty for Energy Infrastructure Projects, Properly Value Coal, Baseload Power Sources

WASHINGTON – Senator John Hoeven this week pressed Richard Glick, chairman of the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC), to take the handcuffs off domestic energy producers and empower the U.S. to unlock its vast energy resources and lower costs for consumers by: 

  • Expediting the approval process for energy infrastructure, including pipelines, to get energy to market.
  • Properly valuing baseload power sources, including coal.

With the Energy Information Administration (EIA) forecasting that U.S. household spending on natural gas for heating will rise 28% this winter, Hoeven drove home the importance of streamlining the permitting process to build infrastructure and pipeline capacity to get natural gas to market. Additionally, Hoeven outlined the importance of coal and other baseload power sources that provide reliable and resilient power that is available when it is needed most, and called on FERC to ensure that they are properly valued given their vital importance to the grid. 

“With skyrocketing energy prices and inflation under the Biden administration, we pressed Chairman Glick to take the handcuffs off our energy producers and strengthen access to reliable and affordable energy for homes and businesses,” said Hoeven. “This includes ensuring FERC recognizes the essential role of 24/7 baseload power sources like coal, particularly during extreme weather events.  FERC also needs to provide permitting certainty to help get more natural gas to market, bring down energy prices, and counter the reliance of our allies on Russian natural gas. North Dakota provides the energy for this nation. We need to get that energy to the market, which is vitally important in combating inflation and making our nation energy secure once again.”

Today’s meeting is the latest in Hoeven’s efforts to provide regulatory relief and help ensure the timely approval of critically-needed energy infrastructure, including pipelines and transmission lines. The senator worked to secure federal approval of the North Bakken Expansion Pipeline, which entered into service earlier this year. The project is helping to reduce flaring in the region by providing nearly 250 million cubic feet of natural gas takeaway capacity. Hoeven led a bipartisan group of 25 senators in calling on FERC to act and review the North Bakken Expansion project and 13 other natural gas pipeline projects pending before the Commission.

Hoeven also recently helped introduce legislation to comprehensively reform federal permitting and project reviews. Importantly, the bill helps protect against federal overreach by codifying Trump-era policies like: 

  • Modernizing and streamlining the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) review and permitting process.
  • The Navigable Waters Protection Rule’s definition of “waters of the United States” (WOTUS) under the Clean Water Act, ensuring private property rights are protected.
  • Rules to prevent states from unreasonably blocking energy projects and those designed to streamline permitting for critical energy projects.