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Group keeps tabs on energy infrastructure

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The Harrisburg Regional Chamber and the Pennsylvania State Grange recently joined a statewide group hoping to bring attention to pipelines and other infrastructure popping up to serve the natural-gas industry.

Founded in June, the Pennsylvania Energy Infrastructure Alliance supports investments that modernize energy infrastructure and ensure reliable access to low-cost energy.

Among the goals of the Grange is to coax some of that energy in the direction of farmers and other rural businesses before it is exported elsewhere.

"There's a lot of public opposition to these pipelines, and I think a way to overcome that is to have more people benefit from the pipelines going across the state," said Betsy Huber, government affairs director for the Grange, which is based in Lemoyne.

Some pipeline maps, she said, appear to show few access points.

The Harrisburg chamber is interested in local access to natural gas, too, but also in keeping an eye on the state’s broader energy infrastructure as it grows and matures.

"The start of this coalition is around the gas industry", said David Black, president and CEO of the Harrisburg Regional Chamber and CREDC. "Part of our hope is that it also expands. Obviously, our electric grid needs upgrades and improvements."

Other members of the infrastructure alliance include labor unions and chambers of commerce from around the state.

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