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Posts Tagged ‘Jordan Cove LNG terminal’

In 2009, the Port of Coos Bay and developers began touting an import terminal for Liquified Natural Gas (LNG), the Jordan Cove Project. Overseas LNG tankers would come into the terminal on North Spit and offload gas into pipelines to be sent on to points east (and more probably south to California, a state who has adamantly refused to build LNG terminals, presumably because they understand the multiple hazards.)LNG pipelines

Environmental and other local groups warned that the direction could be reversed, i.e. what was proposed to be an import terminal could, in fact, become an export terminal, carrying natural gas from points east to Coos Bay and on to Asian destinations. Oh no, the developers insisted. Well, guess what. Last fall the flow reversed. Now the developers want to ship LNG out of the terminal. Gosh, are we surprised?

Port of Coos Bay courtesy of the Port

Meanwhile, over at “Project Mainstay,” the Port is trying to figure out how to export 6 to 10 million tons of coal annually as well. That would be shipped in by rail from Wyoming’s Powder River Basin and sent on to Asian destinations to be burned in power plants. When asked for documents pertaining the plan, the Port balked, and put on a price tag of $20,000 to view, what seem to be, public documents.(The Port is a public agency, right?) The Coos County DA found the charges “excessive”, citing the $17,000 lawyer’s fees in particular. Yesterday the Port appealed.

Port of Coos Bay courtesy of the Port

Then there’s the dredging that’s going to be needed to bring in those giant tankers, regardless of whether they’re picking up LNG or coal. In January, after the State Lands Office OKed a dredging permit (the largest estuarine permit in Oregon’s history) a coalition of local and environmental groups appealed, citing destruction of  habitat essential for salmon, oyster and other commercial fishing and recreational uses.

I’m confused.

On the one hand, we’re trying to ship tar sands-derived (an extremely environmentally damaging and energy intensive process) petroleum from Alberta via the Keystone XL pipeline (total project costs estimated at $150+ billion) into the US. On the other hand,  we’re trying to ship out US-produced natural gas (most derived from fracking, a process with extensive environmental costs) and coal (we all know what that’s like to mine, ship and store). All this while the US is supposed to be striving for “energy independence.”

Makes no sense to me… unless I follow the money.


Canadian Tar Sands courtesy of National Geographic

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