Friday, September 21, 2018

Senate Environmental Committee Holds Sept. 25 Hearing On Foreign Influence On Natural Gas Development In PA

The Senate Environmental Resources and Energy Committee is scheduled to hold a hearing September 25 to discuss foreign influence on natural gas development in Pennsylvania.
The Committee expects to receive comments from--
-- Kevin J. Mooney, Reporter, The Daily Signal (a news platform from the Heritage Foundation);
-- Thomas J. Shepstone, Shepstone Management Company, Inc. and publisher of Natural Gas Now.
In June, The Caucus/ published a lengthy article on allegations Russia, which depends on natural gas exports to Europe for cash, tried to preserve its dominance by sowing discord and opposition to the development of natural gas in the United States, Pennsylvania and to specific projects like the Dakota Access Pipeline.
The article follows a report by the Republican staff on the U.S. House Committee on Science, Space And Technology released in March of this year that concluded, “Russian agents were exploiting American social media platforms in an effort to disrupt domestic energy markets, suppress research and development of fossil fuels, and stymie efforts to expand the use of natural gas.”
The Caucus/ article pointed to a series of stories published by the RT website, which is owned by RTTV America, Inc. a registered foreign agent with the U.S. Department of Justice, that highlighted protests to natural gas development in the state.
Caucus/ also cited the story by Amy Sisk, a reporter for StateImpact PA, as she recounted how a photo she took at the Dakota Access Pipeline demonstrators site was used by Russia’s Internet Research Agency to illustrate a story on the U.S. House Committee staff report on Russian influence in the energy sector.
Sisk’s found out about the use of the photo from a story in the Washington Post  on how Russian Internet trolls sought to inflame the debate over climate change, fracking and the Dakota Pipeline.
David Masur from PennEnvironment was quoted in the Lancaster article as saying, “Certainly the case against fracking is clearly supported by the facts and doesn’t need ‘fake news’ or any foreign interference to know that dirty drilling is bad for our air, water, health and environment.”
He added he hadn’t heard of Russian interference in the energy debate before a reporter emailed him.
Click Here to read the Caucus/ story.
The hearing will be held in Hearing Room 1 of the North Office  Building starting at 10:00. Click Here to watch live.
Sen. Gene Yaw (R-Lycoming) serves as Majority Chair of the Senate Environmental Committee and can be contacted by calling 717-787-3280 or sending email to:   Sen. John Yudichak (D-Luzerne) serves as Minority Chair and can be contacted by calling 717-787-7105 or sending email to:
(Photo: Mariner East 2 Pipeline construction in Lancaster County,
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