U.S. Rep. Steve Cohen of Memphis Asks Joe Biden to Review Gas Pipeline Permits Nationwide


U.S. Representative Steve Cohen (D-TN-09) this week said he wants more federal oversight of the oil industry and asked that U.S. President Joe Biden review the use of gas pipeline permits nationwide.

Cohen announced the news via email to his constituents this week. He said Memphis residents who recently stopped the construction of the Byhalia Pipeline through southwest Memphis have forced people to think more about environmental justice issues.

The Byhalia Pipeline was supposed to transmit crude oil from a Valero refinery in Memphis all the way to Mississippi.

Cohen, in his letter to Biden, said “the pipeline was set to plow through lower income, black neighborhoods already overburdened with polluting infrastructure.”

“The Byhalia pipeline may not be completed, but its story illustrates all too clearly how Nationwide Permits (NWP’s) can allow problematic projects to circumvent not only the Clean Water Act, but also all public input and review processes, including considerations of environmental justice,” Cohen wrote in the letter to Biden.

“There are several other projects that utilize these NWPs that may be familiar, including the Dakota Access pipeline, Keystone XL pipeline, Mountain Valley pipeline, and Enbridge’s Line 3 and Line 5 pipelines. These include projects that are over 1,000 miles long or with over 2,000 waterbody crossings—neither instance represents ‘minimal adverse environmental effects.’ Projects of this scale need to be properly scrutinized not just for immediate environmental impacts, but also for cumulative impacts, including potential impacts on climate change.”

U.S. Representative Peter DeFazio (D-OR-04) co-signed the letter. DeFazio chairs the U.S. House Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure.

The team promoting the Byhalia Pipeline said on their website in June that safety matters most and that they “meet or exceed local, regional and federal safety standards as we construct and operate our pipelines.”

Former U.S. Vice President Al Gore spoke out against the Byhalia Pipeline. Members of the Virginia-based Southern Environmental Law Center did the same.

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Chris Butler is an investigative journalist at The Tennessee Star. Follow Chris on Facebook. Email tips to [email protected]
Image “Rep Steve Cohen” by Rep Steve Cohen.




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10 Thoughts to “U.S. Rep. Steve Cohen of Memphis Asks Joe Biden to Review Gas Pipeline Permits Nationwide”

  1. Jay

    You public transport people should move to New York they could use the business let cohen take the bus.

  2. Truthy McTruthFace

    Cohen is the worst person in TN.

    Let’s Go Brandon!

  3. william delzell

    A perfectly reasonable request by Cohen! The oil and gas companies have a terrible track record when it comes to public safety and environmental racism.

  4. Beatrice Shaw

    This man has the courage to do what is RIGHT! We need more public transportation to use less fuel. BTW…it is idiotic to ask a Congressman to walk from his home district to Washington, DC. Members of Congress should be able to use transportation modes not available to everyone because of the extreme burden they carry in representing us…especially a State like Tennessee which needs all the leadership it can find.

    1. jamesb

      the guy is an idiot. public transpotation is a math unless you are born into it. i drive 39 moles one way to work in a rural area. no buses or trains here dummy

      also was buying gas at 1.65 per gallon. idiots like mafia joe and cohen i am now paying 3.15 per gallon

      thanks for robbing me.

  5. CMinTN

    Just remember, his liberal constituents put him in office and they killed the pipeline. We are now going to reward them with a new Ford plant to work at…

  6. John

    It’d be quite funny if Biden listened and rerouted the pipeline through this Bozo’s gated community.

  7. Speaking of gas, I think it’s time Steve Cohen got reviewed.

  8. Kevin

    Have you ever looked at a map of where various distribution pipelines run? Pipelines are everywhere! And certainly if there were leaks everywhere, the Fake News would be broadcasting it 24/7.

    But one has to wonder, will Cohen walk back and forth from Memphis to DC, while us citizens are back running our businesses, doing our jobs and doing all of our chores manually, without fossil fuel driven machines? Once again we see the Democrat Party for what it really is, the party of slavery!

    Cohen won’t be happy until all of us are back

  9. rick

    Cohen is a ‘GAS PIPELINE”. “LETS GO BRANDON” !!!