Court throws out Bradwood LNG license
March 2, 2011 in Bradwood, Clatsop County, Cowlitz County, Environmental issues, FERC, Northern Star, ODOE, Oregon, pipeline, Wahkiakum County, Washington State | Permalink
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County board OKs new review on pipeline
New evidence will be
allowed at meeting
By KATIE WILSON
The Daily Astorian
Jaws actually dropped
at the Clatsop County Board of Commissioners meeting Wednesday night after three
of four commissioners voted to allow new testimony and evidence on a liquefied
natural gas application decision.
"What it tells me is that they're
really listening," said Astoria resident and longtime LNG opponent Laurie
Caplan after the meeting. The commissioners' decision caught her completely by surprise.
September 23, 2010 in Clatsop County, FERC, LNG, ODOE, Oregon, pipeline, Safety | Permalink
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NEWS FROM THE OFFICE OF CONGRESSMAN DAVID WU
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Friday, August 13, 2010
Contact: Julia Louise Krahe
WU ANNOUNCES LOCAL CONTROL FOR ENERGY AND ENVIRONMENT ACT
Astoria, Ore. — Today Congressman David Wu joined local leaders to announce that he will soon introduce the Local Control for Energy and Environment Act, which will give state governments—not federal agencies—final say in the siting of liquefied natural gas (LNG) terminals.
“I’ve heard time and time again from small business owners, farmers, fishermen, and parents that they are confused and frustrated by the multiple LNG projects and timelines, and more importantly, that they do not feel like their voices are being heard,” said Congressman David Wu. “The time has come to put the people of Oregon back in the driver's seat when it comes to deciding whether or not LNG is welcome here.”
State governments used to have final authority on decisions regarding LNG facilities, but in 2005, the Bush administration and Republican Congress crafted an energy bill that made the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission the final decision-making body on the construction, expansion, or operation of any facility that exports, imports, or processes LNG.
To return this power to state governments so that Oregon communities can once again determine their own energy future, Congressman Wu's Local Control for Energy and Environment Act will nullify Section 311 of the Energy Policy Act of 2005.
By reestablishing Oregon’s role in the LNG siting process, Congressman Wu believes that future energy decisions will better reflect the goals and values of the local community. Concerns about the FERC process were underscored by local community leader Laurie Caplan.
“The FERC approval process for LNG is broken,” said Laurie Caplan, chair of Columbia Pacific Common Sense. “Time and again FERC has shown itself unwilling to regulate LNG and unwilling to advocate for the public."
Local elected officials spoke about the importance the community places on environmental protection and how nullifying Section 311 would help address such concerns.
“The adoption of this legislation will provide Oregon with a valuable tool to protect our fisheries, forests, and farms from the intrusion of foreign fossil fuel infrastructure,” said Clatsop County Commissioner-elect Peter Huhtala.
Local business leaders also joined Wu to support the legislation, which has a companion bill in the Senate, S. 3056, which was introduced by Ron Wyden.
“Congressman Wu, along with Ron Wyden in the Senate, have taken steps to ensure that the states have the right of self determination when it comes to the siting of energy facilities. I applaud their efforts, but the job is far from complete,“ said Don West, general manager of the Cannery Pier Hotel.
Congressman David Wu will introduce this legislation in the U.S. House of Representatives on Wednesday, September 15, 2010. It is a companion measure to S. 3056 introduced by Senator Ron Wyden (OR). Full text of the bill will be available from the Library of Congress at Thomas.govshortly afterward.
August 13, 2010 in Clatsop County, FERC, LNG, ODOE, Oregon, pipeline, Washington State | Permalink
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Daily Astorian: Inconvenient questions are urgent
LNG game is
like financial mistakes that became the Great RecessionThere has
been a certain turn in the long road of government deliberation over
whether a liquefied natural gas terminal will be sited on the Columbia
River at Bradwood. The Oregon Department of Environmental Quality has
said it will not approve the plant without more definitive information.
The National Marine Fisheries Service has said it must do more testing
before giving its approval. And Oregon Sens. Ron Wyden and Jeff Merkley
have reintroduced legislation that would end the Federal Energy
Regulatory Commission's sole power to license LNG plants. All of this
happened last week.
The Wyden-Merkley legislation targets the
absurdity and the inadequacy of the federal process by which LNG
terminals are sited. But in the near chaos of this election year, their
progress is unlikely. The other gaping hole in the Bradwood LNG proposal
is the lower Columbia River as prime habitat for salmon and a host of
other creatures. On that score, the actions by Oregon DEQ and the
federal NMFS are immediately significant.
Pentagon planners these
days talk about asymmetrical warfare. There is a similar phenomenon in
the LNG siting process. NorthernStar LLC, Bradwood's promoter and owner,
talks about jobs, investment and the supply of natural gas. That is
alluring campaign talk. But construction jobs are transitory, and the
river lives on. At this late date in the Pacific Northwest's
manipulation of the Columbia River, our fisheries and environmental
agencies cannot ignore the reality that the river off Bradwood is a
highly important corridor for endangered salmon runs in which the nation
has invested billions trying to restore.
There has never been a
compelling case to establish the need for an LNG terminal at Bradwood.
NorthernStar's proposal is all about the profits that come from flipping
the terminal, once it is built. The FERC licensing process is all about
who gets to federal regulators first with a completed and defensible
application. The FERC process is not about establishing the basis of
national need and strategic siting for a terminal. That is the role the
federal government should play in this process.
All in all, the
FERC process thus far shares many similarities with the financial
mistakes that blew up into the Great Recession - a careless rush that is
all about easy answers and quick profits. What we need, both as a
region and a nation, is to slow down and ask the right questions. How
many LNG terminals does America need? Where can new terminals and
related pipelines be located to do the most good with the least harm to
the environment? Who has the best long-term track record for safe,
community-friendly operations? Can all adverse impacts to the Columbia
and its species be reversed when this terminal has outlived its
These inconvenient questions and many others have
gotten short shrift. The process assumes that anything good for LNG is
good for the USA. It is good to see Oregon's DEQ, federal fisheries
scientists and our U.S. senators demanding answers and searching for
better ways to arrive at these decisions.
March 15, 2010 in Bradwood, Clatsop County, FERC, LNG, News, Northern Star, ODOE, Safety, Science | Permalink
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Oregon Rejects Demands of NorthernStar LNG, 15 Other States File Amicus Brief Supporting Oregon’s Lawsuit Against NorthernStar
For Immediate Release:
Friday, February 19, 2010
Brett VandenHeuvel, Director, Columbia Riverkeeper – 503 348 2436
Dan Serres, Conservation Director, Columbia Riverkeeper - 503 890-2441
Portland, OR - NorthernStar’s proposed Bradwood Landing liquefied natural gas (LNG) terminal suffered two serious setbacks that may endanger the project.
First, the Oregon Department of Environmental Quality (DEQ) released a letter today rejecting NorthernStar’s demand that DEQ issue permits in 2010.
“We are very pleased that the DEQ has clearly signaled its commitment to good science and sound process. The construction of an LNG terminal on the Columbia River would significantly impact our state’s land, air, water, and public safety,” stated Brian Pasko, Director of the Oregon Chapter of the Sierra Club.
The LNG terminal has suffered multi-year setbacks as state and federal agencies have asked for complete and accurate data on the project’s harm to salmon and impact to the Columbia River Estuary. NorthernStar, who recently stated they planned to start construction in 2010, demanded that DEQ issue permits within months. DEQ rejected these unusual demands.
DEQ’s February 17, 2010, letter states, “[NorthernStar’s] three principal demands are that DEQ: (1) drop its request for three-dimensional modeling,” (2) approve the project “without the benefit” of a consultation with the National Marine Fisheries Service, and (3) “agree to issue its certification by July 2010.” DEQ rejected each demand and said that NorthernStar would either provide the requested data and extend the permitting timeline or DEQ’s “decision will likely lead to a denial of certification.”
Brett VandenHeuvel, executive director of Columbia Riverkeeper, responded to DEQ’s letter. “NorthernStar’s demands indicate desperation. DEQ rejected these demands and has indicated that it’s willing to deny the project.”
In a second significant blow to the project, the Attorney Generals of fifteen other states, including Louisiana, Mississippi, and Ohio, filed an amicus brief against Bradwood LNG in a lawsuit challenging the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission’s (FERC) approval of the Bradwood project. The amicus brief supports Oregon’s position that Oregon has authority to deny the LNG terminals.
The amicus brief, filed by Joseph R. Biden III of Delaware, Martha Coakley of Massachusettes, and James “Buddy” Caldwell of Louisiana, among others, supports the arguments of Oregon , Washington, the Nez Perce Tribe, Columbia Riverkeeper, and other organizations.
“We’re thrilled that so many other states, along with Oregon and Washington, recognize the problems with the Bradwood application,” stated Scott Jerger from Field Jerger LLP, who represents Columbia Riverkeeper and other organizations.
An amicus or “friends of the court” brief may be submitted by non-parties who believe the issues in the case are so important that their interests are effected.
February 19, 2010 in Northern Star, ODOE | Permalink
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Oregon LNG Signs Memorandum of Understanding with the State of Oregon on CO2 Mitigation, Plant Retirement and Emergency Preparedness
MOU with State Agency Reflects “the Oregon Way of Doing Business”
WARRENTON, Ore.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Oregon LNG today signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with the Oregon Department of Energy, committing to key steps in the areas of CO2 mitigation, plant retirement and emergency preparedness.
“This MOU is part of our commitment to work cooperatively with the State of Oregon,” said Peter Hansen, chief executive officer of Oregon LNG. The MOU is not required for LNG projects, and not all proposed projects in Oregon have signed similar agreements.
June 8, 2009 in ODOE | Permalink
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Sandia reports spill over water.
|U.S. DOE Releases Analysis of Spills Over Water from Large LNG Carriers|
|Posted: July 25, 2008|
|The U.S. Department of Energy this afternoon released a report by Sandia National Laboratories that assesses the hazards of potential spills over water from large LNG vessels. According to the report, the thermal hazard distances resulting from a spill from a large capacity LNG vessel at a near-shore facility are about 7-8% greater than the distances associated with a smaller vessel. Citing the continued development of LNG deepwater port projects, the report evaluates separately the hazards of potential LNG spills at offshore facilities. The full report is available on the Department of Energy's website. |
July 25, 2008 in ODOE | Permalink
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Thank you, TED.
The governor's respond to the FERC'ers.
The FEIS issued on June 6, 2008 is "Fatally Flawed and Legally Deficient".
Click for the complete document of 57 pages: http://elibrary.ferc.gov/idmws/file_list.asp?accession_num=20080711-5106
July 11, 2008 in ODOE | Permalink
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Sad news re: Catherine Van Horn
On a sad note, Cathy Van Horn, who was the State's lead person
overseeing the LNG issue for the State and the Oregon Department of Energy,
passed away suddenly . She leaves behind a husband and an eight year old
daughter. This is a tremendous loss. She was very knowledgeable on the LNG
issue and would have made sure things were thoroughly analysed. Although we did
not always agree on issues, we respected and admired her honesty, integrity, and
We will miss her.
Catherine L. Van Horn
July 25, 1961 - September 15, 2006
SALEM – Cathy's biggest joy was playing with and planning events for her daughter and the children at McKinley Elementary School. She had the gift of taking a grand vision and bringing it to life for everyone. In her "spare time", she loved to tend her garden and enjoyed more crafting hobbies than could be fit in this column. Cathy was very proud of her Cherokee and Creek Indian heritage, and of the many places she lived during her life, was probably closest to home in Hawaii, where she had a deep and wonderful bond with the Hawaiian people and their culture.
Cathy spent several years writing and editing for newspapers and magazines before returning to school for a Ph.D. in Communications at the University of Washington. She taught journalism as a college professor in Hawaii and Iowa, and most recently worked as an analyst for the Oregon Office of Energy.
Cathy is survived by her husband, Wayne Parker and daughter, Gillian both of Salem; brother, Scott of Sacramento; sister, Amy of Medford; stepfather, Jack Rowbotham of Wilsonville; and will be missed by more friends than she could have imagined.
Memories of Cathy can be shared at 3:30 p.m., Fri., Sept. 22, at Virgil T. Golden Funeral Home. In lieu of flowers, contributions can be made to the McKinley Parent-Teacher Club.
September 20, 2006 in News, ODOE | Permalink
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Oregon state agencies
Here is how to get in touch with the Oregon state agencies and elected officials who are concerned with the siting of LNG plants.
Oregon Department of Energy (ODOE)
Oregon Department of Energy
625 Marion St NE
Salem, OR 97301
August 1, 2005 in ODOE, Oregon | Permalink
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