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'Not so fast'
MEMA
I. Problem:
The natural gas utilities are taking specific and aggressive advantage of the current price discrepancy and are engaged in a focused and serious challenge to our businesses and the Maine energy markets. Specifically, Summit Natural Gas has taken an unusually aggressive approach to expanding into previously (and maybe still) uneconomic areas of the state. SNG has been enhancing its marketing approach by acting fast and loose with some so called "facts" that must be addressed and corrected.
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Legislative Updates



White House: No deadline on Keystone
The Hill
White House press secretary Jay Carney attempted to sideline any noise that President Barack Obama would establish a hard deadline for his decision on the Keystone XL pipeline. "Our position on that process hasn't changed, which is that it needs to run its appropriate course without interference from the White House or Congress," Carney said to reporters. "It was because of actions taken by Republicans in Congress that one delay was caused in the process already."
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 MEMA Special Events

Date Event More Information
April 16 Federated Insurance presents 'Designated Risk Management' MEMA Headquarters
May 7 Angus Energy presents Modern Art: The Evolution of the Energy IndustryMEMA Headquarters
May 8 Angus Energy presents Modern Art: The Evolution of the Energy IndustryBangor Location TBD
June 10-11 New England Fuel Institute's 2014 Visions ConfrenceDCU Center, Worcester
June 22-24 60th Annual Convention The Samoset Inn & Spa
July 30 MTEC Technician TailgateCabela's Scarborough
Aug. 25 32 Annual J Garrie Murray Golf Classic Penobscot Valley Country Club, Orono Maine



Industry Headlines



Thank oil for warmth
South Portland-Cape Elizabeth
The calendar tells us that spring is here, and though lingering snowbanks make it hard to think of warmer temperatures, they will be here soon enough. Spring fever makes it easier to forget all those bitterly cold winter nights we endured. Most of us spent those cold nights comfortably warm inside our homes — a comfort made possible by the many hardworking people who operate southern Maine's energy supply chain.
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What an energy revolution doesn't look like
The Atlantic
Alexis C. Madrigal, for The Atlantic, writes: "When I started writing about energy in 2007, it seemed like a revolution was on the way! Concern about climate change seemed to be growing and the cost of wind and solar power were declining. Fast forward six years, and no revolution has come. Instead, the U.S. energy system looks remarkably like it did in 2008. Overall energy usage has declined a bit — thanks, prolonged economic downturn! — but the energy services we get have actually declined more. That is to say, the efficiency of the system has gone down."
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Natural gas expansion could spike Hallowell water rates by 20 percent
Kennebec Journal
The local water district wants to raise rates for most water users by 20 percent to pay for a new employee to help monitor natural gas expansion in the city. Many utility districts in the Kennebec Valley have said the industry's quick, unprecedented ramp-up in the area last year has strained them, as utility crews had to track existing lines under public roads while two gas companies raced to put new lines in.
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Greens fear a fracking obsession on the campaign trail
National Journal
Pennsylvania's environmentalists want to talk about renewable energy. It's proving a lonely conversation. As a crowded field of Democrats competes for the right to take on Republican Gov. Tom Corbett, the state's green movement is looking for some mention of how to restore the state's once-leading wind and solar energy sector. What they're getting instead — when the candidates discuss energy — is wall-to-wall talk about natural gas. The fossil fuel is booming, thanks to the massive Marcellus shale gas formation and the fracking technologies used to develop it. And that's made it nearly impossible for renewables to get much traction over fossil fuels.
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LAST WEEK'S MOST POPULAR ARTICLES
Missed last week's issue? See which articles your colleagues read most.

    Did you know ... (MEMA)
LePage: Wood-burning stoves get a regulatory chill (The Maine Wire)
Senate Democrats give cold shoulder to bill that would provide heating options (The Maine Wire)
Windham residents return to homes after gas leak (Portland Press Herald)
King a leader in need to address climate change (Kennebec Journal)

Don't be left behind. Click here to see what else you missed.


Cate Street plugs pellet mill proposal, promises to pay overdue taxes
Bangor Daily News
The developers of a $140 million pellet mill slated for the Katahdin Avenue industrial park gave a preview of its plans to town leaders and promised to pay the $2.3 million in property taxes its firm owes the town within three months. Cate Street Capital project manager Dammon M. Frecker received a cordial but wary response from the Town Council and about 60 residents when he talked about Cate Street subsidiary Thermogen Industries’ plans to employ about 55 people in a pellet mill the company plans to open in summer 2015.
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Women in oil and gas: Why the US may be lagging behind
By Lucy Wallwork
Numerous studies reaffirm the contribution of women to the workplace across all industries. But in the oil and gas sector — an industry with a lingering reputation of an "old boys' club" — it somehow still seems more of an uphill struggle to achieve meaningful participation by women. Times are changing across the industry, and some sort of board-level representation of women is clearly becoming the norm, but the independents leading the U.S. oil boom are lagging behind the pack.
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MEMA Randoms
Colby Horton, Vice President of Publishing, 469.420.2601
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Brent Mangum, Content Editor, 469.420.2602  
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