A fight over the future of the nation's energy resources is currently taking place in the U.S. Senate. The construction of the Keystone XL pipeline and an energy efficiency bill are at stake.

Ballard Spahr Environment and Natural Resources partner Harry Weiss told HousingWire: “The Keystone XL pipe would spike the demand for oil. However, if we’re going to meet our energy needs, there’s a tradeoff”—specifically, reconciling the mortgage-banking industry to the needs of the energy industry without canceling benefits to the homeowner or whoever owns the drilling rights on a property.

Mr. Weiss says that, if done correctly, it could be an all-around win, but critics abound: “There is some hysteria because it’s being done in places that it’s never been done before.” He believes that fracking will not reduce property value, and added, “The value of the mortgage where the borrower owns the drilling rights could be higher. There’s more security in the mortgage, but where the borrower just controls the surface, the concerns are heightened for mortgage bankers.”


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Environment and Natural Resources