Appalachia underground natural gas storage clears 1st test

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) -- Plans for an underground liquefied natural gas storage hub pegged as a major job creator for Appalachia have cleared their first big hurdle.

Appalachia Development Group LLC says the Appalachia Storage & Trading Hub initiative received approval Wednesday for the first of two application phases for a $1.9 billion U.S. Department of Energy loan. The group also aims to secure $1.4 billion in other financing.

Group CEO Steve Hedrick said it hasn't been determined where the project will land, but listed West Virginia, Ohio, Kentucky, and Pennsylvania.

The American Chemistry Council has estimated the project could attract up to $36 billion in new chemical and plastics industry investment and create 100,000 new area jobs.

Senators Joe Manchin and Shelley Moore Capito are pushing for the facility to land in West Virginia.

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1/3/2018 1:20:23 PM (GMT -5:00)