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With another winter in full swing, New England consumers – especially working families and seniors on fixed incomes – continue to be at risk of price shocks when the bills are due to power and heat their homes as a result of opposition to new pipelines.

Competition for pipeline access into New England is poised to intensify as the power grid, already getting more than half of its supply from gas, becomes even more reliant on the fuel as coal-fired plants shut. Opposition from environmental and consumer groups threatens to delay and derail new lines, including a $3 billion Spectra Energy Corp. project.

“New England remains pipeline constrained, so if bouts of very cold weather move in this winter, you could certainly see prices spike,” Alex Tertzakian, an analyst with Energy Aspects Ltd. in London, said in an e-mail Oct. 28. “This would likely make New England briefly the world’s premium market.”

Read more – Bloomberg