The U.S. Department of Energy and 14 other federal departments and agencies have signed an agreement to expedite the permitting and construction of the Alaska Natural Gas Pipeline which, when operational, will substantially increase domestic natural gas supply and advance the administration’s energy security policy.
The agreement signals the U.S. government’s commitment to expedite the federal permitting processes for the Alaska Natural Gas Pipeline and establishes a project management framework for cooperation among participating agencies to reduce bureaucratic delays in construction of the pipeline and delivery of natural gas to consumers.
The pipeline is expected to supply about 10 percent of future U.S. natural gas demand. When the Alaska pipeline is fully operational, it will carry 4 billion cubic feet of natural gas each day.
Natural gas serves six of every 10 American households, about 62 million homes, and is used to generate about 16% of the nation's electric power. Natural gas is also indispensable as a feedstock for fertilizer and chemical manufacturers. In recent years, rising demand and limited increases in supply have resulted in high natural gas prices that affected residential and industrial users across the economy.
“We need to do all we can to increase our domestic supply of energy – including natural gas – and the Alaska Natural Gas Pipeline will help us do that,” secretary Bodman said. “Alaska’s North Slope is a valuable natural resource that has tremendous potential to provide a significant portion of our nation’s natural gas needs to help heat homes, and build industry. I appreciate the coordinated effort of all of the federal agencies who are working together to help make the pipeline a reality.”