May 17, 2015 |
UGI Energy Services is doubling its capacity to produce liquefied natural gas, aiming to capture a bigger share of an alternative-fuel market for which Philadelphia Gas Works also has ambitions. UGIES, a subsidiary of UGI Corp. of Valley Forge, announced Friday that it plans to build a $60 million plant in northeastern Pennsylvania to produce up to 120,000 gallons of LNG a day from 10 million cubic feet of Marcellus Shale natural gas. The Wyomissing, Pa., company currently operates an LNG plant in Berks County.
April 23, 2015
Honoring a high flier Ever since I wrote a report about Benjamin Franklin in the fourth grade, he has been my favorite Founding Father ("Name airport for the well-traveled Ben Franklin," April 17). A Philadelphian by choice rather than birth, this renaissance man helped put Philadelphia on the map. Renaming the airport for him would be a great way to help visitors grasp the important role history plays in the city. |Suzanne Fluhr, Philadelphia, firstname.lastname@example.org City Council changes City Council has time to vote on digital billboards but not on the budget.
April 23, 2015 |
The Pennsylvania Public Utility Commission published a report Tuesday that suggests seven ways the city-owned Philadelphia Gas Works can speed replacement of its aging pipeline infrastructure. Most of the "opportunities" involve raising prices. The PUC's report recommends that PGW boost charges, cut costs, borrow money, and halt annual payments of $18 million to the city so the utility can direct more money to replacing its system's dangerous gas mains. PGW operates one of the oldest and leakiest gas-distribution systems in the nation.
April 20, 2015 |
While the city's legislators have to work together, Philadelphia City Council is overpopulated by members who reflexively follow Council President Darrell Clarke. Emblematic of this was Council's refusal to hold a public hearing on a $1.87 billion offer for the Philadelphia Gas Works. Council needs an upheaval to return it to its mission of representing the public. Fortunately, the crowd of candidates seeking five Democratic at-large Council seats includes political newcomers with impressive civic experience and potential.
April 18, 2015
ISSUE | FRAT CASE Getting it wrong hurts real victims Michael Smerconish was far too focused on the immediate and localized effect of the misreporting and misrepresentation in the now-discredited Rolling Stone account of a fraternity rape ("Red flags on piece were there," April 12). The larger tragedy here is the pall of doubt and disbelief the magazine cast over actual victims of campus rape. In fact, testosterone and alcohol-fueled fraternities occupied by man-child Neanderthals raised on Internet porn offer a perfect breeding ground for abusive behavior.
April 8, 2015 |
LOOK, UNLESS something insane happens - like Sam Katz entering the mayor's race by riding a live T-Rex through town while he cheerfully throws Tastykakes to the masses - one of those Democrats you keep hearing about is going to be running this city come January. With the May 19 primary election creeping ever closer, now might be a good time to start giving the candidates a closer look. To that end, scores of people last night filled a cavernous gymnasium inside Bright Hope Baptist Church - the church once led by powerful Democratic U.S. Rep. William H. Gray III - for a forum aimed at offering a glimpse at how each of the Democratic mayoral candidates would improve the city's woeful education system.
March 23, 2015 |
Despite Philadelphia City Council's "unqualified" rejection nine years ago of a terminal for liquefied natural gas, the city is once again flirting with the money-making allure of LNG. Several entrepreneurs are promoting plans to increase LNG production at the Philadelphia Gas Works plant in Port Richmond, hoping to capitalize on growing interest in creating an energy hub linked to the Marcellus Shale natural gas boom. The most ambitious plan floated publicly is a $2.1 billion proposal to expand the Port Richmond plant's capacity to export LNG to European markets.
March 19, 2015
ISSUE | VETERANS Early sign-up rules should go national Two years ago, then-U.S. Rep. Allyson Schwartz (D., Pa.) introduced a bill that should have been a no-brainer, but it died anyway. It would have given veterans the ability to register for college classes early. Veterans have limited time to complete courses, and priority registration would have given them the same privilege that athletes and some others have received for a long time. Last year, Pennsylvania joined California, Florida, Tennessee, and Wisconsin as the only states to grant veterans the right to enroll early.
March 19, 2015
RECENTLY, less than three months after UIL Holdings Corporation abandoned its bid to purchase Philadelphia Gas Works, an energy firm based in Spain - Iberdrola - announced that it was acquiring UIL in order to "help the company [diversify] away from Spain," according to the Financial Times . That's great for Iberdrola, which now has an expanded portfolio in the United States, a much more economically stable nation than Spain. That's also great for UIL, which was purchased for $4.6 billion, including assumption of its debt in the deal.
March 15, 2015 |
With the rejected effort to sell the Philadelphia Gas Works behind it, City Council on Friday turned its attention to other private opportunities for the city-owned utility. During an all-day hearing, a parade of witnesses suggested a wide-ranging buffet of alternatives the city could consider for attracting outside investment into PGW. One group, Liberty Energy Trust, offered a novel arrangement where it could take control of PGW's infrastructure to replace aging cast-iron gas mains for a fee. That would liberate the utility from having to pay for the work up front.