West Virginia’s two US senators, Democrat Joe Manchin and Republican Shelley Moore Capito, introduced legislation on June 12 to secure financing to establish a natural gas storage hub in the state.
They said S. 1337 would make the proposed Appalachian Storage Hub eligible for the US Department of Energy’s Title XVII loan guarantee program, allowing the Mountain State to realize unique opportunities associated with the area’s abundant natural gas liquids, naturally occurring geologic storage, and expanding energy systems.
“The Title XVII loan program is a perfect way to help move this project forward. And, because of the regional nature of the project and our abundant natural resources, the loan program will not only help secure private sector investment into a natural gas liquids storage hub, but it will create economic benefits and resilience for the surrounding communities by attracting related investment,” Manchin said.
An abundance of wet gas in the Marcellus, Utica, and Rogersville shales has resulted recently in announcements of significant new investments in the Appalachian region, particularly by the petrochemical industry, the senators said. In fact, the region’s supplies of NGLs are highly underutilized, they added.
An American Chemistry Council report said last month that the Appalachian region potentially could become a major US petrochemical and plastic resin manufacturing center similar to the Gulf Coast because of its proximity to major East Coast and Midwest manufacturing markets as well as to a world-class supply of raw materials (OGJ Online, May 18, 2017).
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