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Oregon Challenges Coos Bay Liquid Natural Gas Terminal ApprovalSalem-News.com
State officials say federal regulators failed to conduct adequate environmental studies before approving Jordan Cove LNG facility.
(COOS BAY) - Oregon Governor Ted Kulongoski and Attorney General John Kroger today announced an administrative challenge to the federal government’s approval of a liquefied natural gas (LNG) terminal on the Oregon Coast.
The challenge seeks reconsideration by the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) of its December approval of the proposed Jordan Cove LNG facility in Coos Bay and the associated pipeline. FERC's conditional license allows the project to move forward without regard for its potentially harmful impacts to Oregon's environment, including impacts to Oregon’s water quality, coastal resources, and endangered species.
“FERC continues to ignore Oregon’s very real concerns about the unknown environmental impact of the pipeline associated with the proposed LNG facility,” said Governor Kulongoski.
“FERC’s decision to issue a conditional license for a project with such profound potential impacts on the lives of Oregonians was based on woefully inadequate information that demands reconsideration.”
“FERC has failed to do its job and conduct the kind of environmental analysis that is required under multiple federal statutes,” added Attorney General Kroger.
“The United States should be striving for energy independence instead of relying on fossil fuels imported from countries like Russia and Iran. This takes us in the wrong direction.”
FERC’s decision failed to satisfy the Federal Clean Water Act and the Coast Zone Management Act because the conditional license was granted before getting state certification that the project would meet environmental standards.
The decision also fails to adequately consider the many environmental impacts of the proposed LNG facility and the 234-mile Pacific Connector pipeline that would transport the gas from Coos Bay to Klamath County.
In addition, FERC’s decision doesn’t address the need for LNG or compare alternatives to the Jordan Cove facility.
If FERC declines to reconsider, Oregon will appeal to the U.S. 9th Circuit Court of Appeals.
Attorney General John Kroger leads the Oregon Department of Justice. The Department's mission is to fight crime and fraud, protect the environment, improve child welfare, promote a positive business climate, and defend the rights of all Oregonians.
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