Officials Further Hopeful About International Rail Port In Bethlehem

Map of Pennsylvania highlighting Northampton C...

Map of Pennsylvania highlighting Northampton County (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Port Authority of New York and New Jersey officials were in Bethlehem last week to further discuss opening a local international rail port and local officials left the meeting feeling very hopeful.

“They’re very interested in the site, they’re very interested in the Lehigh Valley,” said Bethlehem Mayor Bob Donchez, who attended the Sept. 12 meeting with Port Authority officials at Sands Casino Resort Bethlehem.

Lehigh Valley Economic Development Corp. President and CEO Don Cunningham also said the Port Authority is very interested in opening an inland port in Bethlehem. He said the main unknown is whether the owner of the Bethlehem Intermodal rail yard can get funding to expand.

Read more: http://www.lehighvalleylive.com/bethlehem/index.ssf/2014/09/officials_further_hopeful_abou.html

U.S. Economy Grows At Surprising 2.8 Percent Rate

Seal of the United States Department of Commerce

Seal of the United States Department of Commerce (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

WASHINGTON — The U.S. economy expanded at a 2.8 percent annual rate from July through September, a surprising acceleration ahead of the 16-day partial government shutdown. But much of the strength came from a buildup in company stockpiling.

Home construction also rose, and state and local governments spent at their fastest pace in four years. But businesses spent less on equipment, federal spending fell and consumers spent at a slower pace. All are cautionary signs for the final three months of the year.

Overall, growth increased in the third quarter from a 2.5 percent annual rate in the April-June period to the fastest pace in a year, the Commerce Department said today.

Read more: http://readingeagle.com/article.aspx?id=518462

Liquefied Gas Exports Would Boost Growth

LNG is a commonly used acronym for liquefied natural gas, essentially natural gas that is put into liquid form, often for the purpose of transportation.

For international trade, LNG is sent in insulated tanker ships using refrigeration that keeps the liquefied natural gas at a chilly -260 degrees Fahrenheit.  Global shipments travel to receiving terminals on a daily basis where pipelines are then used to provide this clean-burning energy source to homes, schools, businesses and government buildings.  More receiving terminals are being built around the world each year.

In the U.S. there is growing debate over LNG exports, some of which could come from the Marcellus and Utica shale formations found in Pennsylvania, West Virginia and Ohio.

The Energy Information Administration estimates that in just three years natural gas supply could exceed demand, allowing the U.S. to be a net exporter of LNG.  Bipartisan support for such exports has grown to include local and national politicians; most recently, more than 100 members of the House of Representatives signed onto a letter to Department of Energy Secretary Steven Chu that asked the Obama administration for advance LNG exports without delay.

Read more: http://www.post-gazette.com/stories/business/opinion/liquefied-gas-exports-would-boost-growth-674067/#ixzz2KQCyPyV4