Energy secretary says pipeline setbacks pose national security issue

Energy secretary says pipeline setbacks pose national security issue
© Greg Nash

Energy Secretary Dan Brouillette on Tuesday said that he believes recent court decisions that have dealt blows to pipelines create national security challenges. 

Asked by Rep. David McKinleyDavid Bennett McKinleyInvesting in low-emissions energy is the key to the climate crisis OVERNIGHT ENERGY: Supreme Court rules that pipeline can seize land from New Jersey | Study: EPA underestimated methane emissions from oil and gas development | Kevin McCarthy sets up task forces on climate, other issues Bipartisan lawmakers back clean electricity standard, but fall short of Biden goal MORE (R-W.Va.) if the loss of pipelines like the Atlantic Coast and Dakota Access projects “pose a challenge to our national security,” Brouillette said “In my view, yes.”

Brouillette added that it’s “very important” that military facilities have “reliable access to electricity.”

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The top U.S. energy official also said investors may be wary of investing in pipeline projects. 

“The regulatory uncertainty will lead certain investors to back away from these types of projects,” he said. 

Brouillette testified before the House Energy and Commerce Committee on Tuesday during an oversight hearing. 

His comments come after the Atlantic Coast Pipeline was canceled, the Dakota Access Pipeline was ordered shut down in court, and the Supreme Court upheld a setback to the Keystone XL Pipeline

During the hearing, the energy secretary was also questioned on a broad array of topics including legal requirements to update appliance efficiency rules. 

In response to questions from Committee Chairman Frank Pallone (D-N.J.), Brouillette said he would complete “as many [rules] as I possibly can” by the end of the year. 

“The number of missed legal deadlines for new standards has grown from three to 26 since President TrumpDonald TrumpKinzinger says Trump 'winning' because so many Republicans 'have remained silent' Our remote warfare counterterrorism strategy is more risk than reward Far-right rally draws small crowd, large police presence at Capitol MORE took office,” Pallone replied. “ I don’t blame you because you haven’t been there that long, but I do blame the Trump administration in general.”