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"For much of the state of Maine, the environment is the economy"
                                           — US Senator Susan Collins, 2012 Jun 21


News Articles
Passamaquoddy Bay & LNG

2010 January

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2010 Jan


29 Jan 2010

Conditions 'challenging' for N.S. gas — The Chronicle-Herald, Halifax, NS

A couple of years ago, the industry was pushing the construction of liquefied natural gas terminals to meet growing energy demand and offset dwindling supplies. Now, many LNG terminals are not being developed or being turned into export terminals, he said.

Another "game changer" is the development of shale natural gas reserves in the United States and Canada, which is replacing dwindling supplies of conventional gas, he said. [Red & yellow emphasis added.]

Interview with Lucas van Praag [of Goldman Sachs] — American Society of Safety Engineers, Des Plaines, IL

[A division of Goldman Sachs is providing the venture-capital funding for Calais LNG's permitting — SPB webmaster]

Lucas van Praag is the Global Head of Corporate Communications for Goldman Sachs. Founded in 1869, Goldman Sachs is one of the oldest and largest investment banks in the world. The firm recently introduced a new environmental initiative that requires its employees and clients to promote environmentally friendly practices. In this interview, van Praag explains the objectives of the initiative and the role safety, health and environmental (SH&E) professionals can play in its implementation.

Global warming is a reality, and its effects are becoming increasingly apparent. A considerable body of research supports scientists’ view that global warming is a significant threat to our planet. We believe that pursuing renewable energy sources is critical if we are to address the threat. Goldman Sachs has already invested a great deal in wind and solar power, and I confidently predict that we will surpass the one billion dollars that we have committed to spend.

[I]f we determine that a client absolutely refuses to comply with good environmental practices, then we will not conduct business with them.

With respect to “climate change” or the increasing levels of greenhouse gases in the earth’s atmosphere, Goldman Sachs believes that the following principles should guide environmental public policy development:

Goldman Sachs’ own environmental policy includes the following objectives:

SH&E professionals should obviously perform their jobs as efficiently as possible, and they should also work to bring issues of social responsibility to the attention of senior management. We believe that social responsibility is more than a simple “box-checking” exercise. Organizations face issues that can seem relatively minor, but if these issues are not properly managed, they can escalate and have a major impact on an organization’s reputation and bottom line. Social responsibility and SH&E issues can directly affect an organization’s “license to operate.” Although banging this drum can be discouraging at times, SH&E professionals should never give up. [Red, yellow & bold emphasis added.]

Webmaster’s Comments: Goldman Sachs needs to heed its own environmental policy.

Rather than investing in greenhouse-gas-maximizing imported LNG from far-away places — as is being attempted by Calais LNGwhy isn't Goldman Sach supporting our vast resource of environmentally-friendlier domestic natural gas?

[Calais] City Council wants DEP to expedite Calais LNG applications — WQDY-FM, Calais, ME

"The Calais City Council wishes to convey its continuing strong support for this project and to encourage the Department to accept and retain jurisdiction over the applications rather than having the applications be sent to the Board of Environmental Protection. We believe that Department review of the applications is merited given, among other things, the very broad public support for the project here in Calais," the letter read.

As for the opposition across the border, Cassidy reiterated, "I'm not really too concerned about the comments from New Brunswick. They've always been there, they always will be and we'll wave to them as we come through with our first tanker," Cassidy said.

Webmaster’s Comments: Calais City officials ignore the thousands of Mainers (Eastport, Pleasant Point, Perry, and Robbinston) and New Brunswickers (Campobello Island, Deer Island, St. Andrews, and Bayside) who would be subjected to the federal 4.4-mile-diameter Hazard Zones by proposed Calais LNG ship transits — while nearly all Calais residents would be safely seven or more miles away. Calais officials are being drugged by tax dollars and jobs from an inappropriate project location — neighbors, health, and welfare be damned.

The "innocent passage" presumption is fallacious. The UN Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS) clearly states that only the treaty participants have innocent passage rights under the treaty. Since the US has not ratified the treaty, it has no UNCLOS rights. Even US Coast Guard Maritime and International Law attorney CAPT. Charles Michel admitted that there is no legal venue for the US to resolve this issue.

The US Department of State, Sen. Olympia Snowe, Sen. Susan Collins, FERC, and the US Coast Guard are perpetrating a fraud by claiming UNCLOS innocent passage. Continued processing of Passamaquoddy Bay LNG permits has resulted in ongoing and unjustifiable government and civilian expense, along with building false hopes and ill will.

Medford man convicted of lasering LNG tanker helicopter escort and making false statements (Jan 25) — Federal Bureau of Investigation, Boston, MA

…GERARD SASSO, 51, of Medford, Massachusetts, was convicted today in U.S. District Court following a one-week jury trial of shining a powerful green laser beam into a State Police helicopter that was escorting a liquid natural gas tanker (LNG) through Boston Harbor, forcing the helicopter to abandon its escort mission.

The pilots viewed the laser beam as a potential threat to themselves, to the LNG tanker, and to planes landing at nearby Logan Airport.

Golden Pass LNG terminal expecting commissioning cargo in August or September — LNG Law Blog, Washington, DC

Platts LNG Daily [subscription required] reports that Golden Pass LNG expects to receive its first commissioning cargo in August or September of 2010.

Govt to prioritise gas use — Trinidad & Tobago Express, Port-of-Spain, Trinidad & Tobago

Energy Minister Conrad Enill said yesterday that Government has determined how to proceed with the use of natural gas, which industries it will support and on what basis the new industries will be evaluated.

He added that natural gas reserves currently support the following gas based industries-four electrical power generation plants, four LNG plants, 11 ammonia plants, seven methanol plants and four direct reduced iron plants.

Alaska Pipeline project files open season plan — Rigzone, Houston, TX

During the open season, the Alaska Pipeline Project will provide information about its terms and conditions to potential natural gas shippers, allowing them to assess their interest in making long-term commitments to reserve capacity on the pipeline.

Two options will be submitted for shipper assessment in the Alaska Pipeline Project open season. The first option is a pipeline from Alaska's North Slope to Alberta, Canada, a distance of approximately 1,700 miles (2,737 kilometres), where the gas can be delivered on existing pipeline systems serving major North American markets. The second option would transport natural gas from the North Slope to Valdez, Alaska, a distance of approximately 800 miles (1,287 kilometres), where it would be converted to liquefied natural gas in a facility to be built by others and then delivered by ship to North American and international market.

Updated cost estimates for the project are in the range of US $32 billion to US $41 billion for the North Slope to Alberta option, and US $20 billion to US $26 billion for the Valdez option. Both options have an expected in-service date of 2020 and would provide either 4.5 billion cubic feet of natural gas per day under the Alberta option or 3.0 billion cubic feet per day under the Valdez option. [Red emphasis added.]

Webmaster’s Comments: This pipeline, alone, would provide the same amount of natutral gas as 3 to 4½ large LNG import terminals. North America's domestic natural gas resource is overflowing, mooting LNG import infrastructure development.

Companies building Alaska natural gas pipeline prepare for open season — New Brunswick Business Journal, Saint John, NB

Two options will be weighed in the open season. One is to build a 2,737-kilometre line from Alaska to Alberta, where it would connect with TransCanada's existing network that stretches into U.S. markets.

A second option would be to transport natural gas 1,287 kilometres to the port of Valdez, Alaska, where it would be converted into liquefied natural gas and transported by sea to North American and international markets. Other companies would build the facility that would condense the natural gas into a more easily transportable liquid state.

Both would have an expected in-service date of 2020.

But that project still faces a number of regulatory steps, and many wonder whether there will be enough North American demand to warrant both Arctic pipelines, especially with huge volumes flowing from shale gas reservoirs in Canada and the lower 48 U.S. states. [Red, yellow & bold emphasis added.]

Exxon, TransCanada raise Alaska pipeline estimates — (Reuters) Globe Investor, Toronto, ON

CALGARY/ANCHORAGE (Reuters) - TransCanada Corp and partner Exxon Mobil Corp boosted their cost estimates for a planned line to carry Alaska gas to southern markets by up to 58 percent on Friday, as the two ready plans to sign up shippers for the massive project.

The companies said the cost of the 1,700 mile pipeline carrying at least 4.5 billion cubic feet of gas daily from Alaska's North Slope to Alberta will range between $32 billion and $41 billion, up from a previous $26 billion forecast.

Natural gas storage hits a bump — Alaska Dispatch, Anchorage, AK

Deciding it doesn't have clear authority over natural gas storage facilities in existing statutes, the Regulatory Commission of Alaska is asking the Legislature for direction. Should a new facility that warehouses natural gas for electric utilities and distributor Enstar be rate-regulated, or not?

Utilities, state regulators and politicians have been warning of likely gas shortages in the next few winters as Cook Inlet production slumps.

For a while, that gap in deliverability has been covered by ConocoPhillips, which tapers off its take for liquefied natural gas exports to help meet demand at peak times. But ConocoPhillips' federal permit allowing LNG exports expires in March 2011, and the company hasn't announced its plans for the future.

LNG cargo through Panama may rise on expansion, TradeWinds says — Bloomberg News

Repsol YPF is interested in using the canal to ship LNG from Peru and Kitimat LNG Inc. is also considering using the waterway to sell Canadian cargoes to customers in the Atlantic, TradeWinds reported. The 80-kilometer (50-mile) canal, which connects the Pacific Ocean with the Caribbean Sea, is undergoing a $5.25 billion expansion.

Opponents take LNG to court (Jan 28) — The Forest Grove News-Times, Forest Grove, OR

Coalition fighting proposed natural gas terminal says feds didn’t do their homework or prove need

“FERC failed to consider the harm to salmon and the very real costs of this project to Oregon’s farms, forests and energy prices.” said Brett VandenHeuvel, executive director of Columbia Riverkeeper, the nonprofit spearheading the coalition.

Wellinghoff has since been named the chairman of FERC, and has been meeting with concerned citizens and state officials in Oregon about the proposed LNG terminals and the pipelines that would follow.

[A]nother project, the Ruby Pipeline, is catching up to the LNG projects. The project would build a 674-mile-long pipeline from Wyoming to Oregon that would pump domestic natural gas from the center of the country to the coast.

If the Ruby Pipeline moves forward, it could be increasingly difficult for LNG proponents to convince state officials that the projects are necessary. [Red & yellow emphasis added.]

Senate bill gives state bigger role in LNG proposals (Jan 28) — Ventura County Star, Camarillo, CA

SACRAMENTO — The California Senate on Thursday approved a bill that would give the state a larger role in monitoring and assessing future applications to build liquefied natural gas terminals.

[N]atural gas prices have fallen and California’s available supply has increased, dampening interest in building such terminals, which would allow natural gas from abroad to be imported into the state. There are eight LNG terminals in the United States, but the only such facility on the West Coast is along Mexico’s Baja California coast.

By acting now, [Sen. Joe Simitian, D-Palo Alto] argues, the state will be in better position to assess LNG applications when and if industry interest in the projects returns. [Red emphasis added.]

Shale gas could redefine energy, BP says — UPI

"It probably transforms the U.S. energy outlook for the next 100 years," he said at the World Economic Forum. "It's yet to be seen if it can be applied globally."

Webmaster’s Comments: There is no longer any question about domestic natural gas' destruction of planned incremental LNG imports to the US. Like the dinosaurs they are, Downeast LNG and Calais LNG have no future.

U.S. natural gas price forecasts hold steady for 2010: poll — Edmonton Journal, Edmonton, AB

Energy analysts kept their forecasts for U.S. natural gas prices this year nearly steady from last quarter after a six-week cold snap this winter lifted demand and sharply cut inventories from the record highs seen at the start of the heating season.

Of the 26 industry participants, nine revised upward their forecasts from early October, while nine cut them. The rest were unchanged or did not participate in the previous poll.

The number of U.S. rigs drilling for natural gas now stands at a 10-month high of 833, up 25 percent since bottoming at 665 in July, according to recent data from Baker Hughes.

Analysts note there are huge reserves of shale gas, some located near existing drilling and pipeline operations, that can be readily tapped should prices climb too far. [Red & bold emphasis added.]

Center for American Progress: 2010 outlook for Eurasian energy (Jan 28) — U.S. Department of State, Washington, DC

Unconventional gas development in the U.S. is accelerating the already growing availability of LNG. Gas supplies from Qatar, Nigeria, Trinidad and Tobago and elsewhere that were intended to supply the U.S. market are seeking customers elsewhere, including in Europe. While LNG is still only 8% of the total gas market, it is 39% of the volume of gas traded across borders, it is growing rapidly. LNG offers many advantages over long haul pipeline gas including transparent, market pricing with the possibility of shipments on a spot basis. Of course, it requires a large investment in highly technical shipping and receiving terminals but LNG production in Qatar, Algeria, Australia, Papua New Guinea, Timor Leste, and Nigeria and elsewhere is growing. LNG will provide more price competition, new ways to think about long-term contracts, and the development of a real market for natural gas.

When we are talking about new natural gas production in Azerbaijan or Turkmenistan, it is unlikely that one molecule of that gas will reach the U.S., but it is still important because it would add to international gas supply, increasing global energy security. New supply in one place naturally frees up supply in another. [Red, yellow & bold emphasis added.]

Gazprom: Angel or Demon? — Stockopedia, London, England, UK

Gazprom faces regular opprobrium for its bullying ways of using energy as a pressure and political tool. Seen by some, mostly Russians, as the symbol of a successful and strong Russia, others see it as a dominating juggernaut, economic right arm of the Kremlin implementing, or should we say, imposing its policies by using energy as a weapon.

And why should Gazprom take upon itself to act differently if it can get away with what it does and not be sanctioned by its own government?

Webmaster’s Comments: The energy sector needs to learn the meaning of "ethics," and then abide by the same.


28 Jan 2010

Excelerate supplies 20% of New England’s gas needs — RWE, Essen, Germany

RWE’s partner in LNG, Excelerate Energy LLC, is currently supplying approximately 20% of New England’s daily gas needs since deliveries began at its offshore Northeast Gateway receiving facility in December 2009. So far this winter, Excelerate has delivered two cargoes containing over 5,000,000 mmbtu of LNG in total.

Webmaster’s Comments: Excelerate's Northeast Gateway deepwater port is around 13 miles offshore from Gloucester, MA, safely away from civilian populations — unlike the Downeast LNG and Calais LNG ill-sited proposals.

Monster ships, no room for error [Editorial] — EastBay RI, Bristol, RI

Given all the ways things can go wrong fast on the water and realizing the awful potential should an LNG tanker hit a bridge, a bill requiring 25 feet of clearance between ship top and bridge bottom is nothing more than common sense.

Most disturbing in this debate is the flat out denial by some who should know better that there is even the slightest risk in driving a 950-foot gas-laden tanker beneath a bridge with but five feet of clearance.

It also requires that we disregard history and forget that:

No doubt the systems on these tankers are superb and the pilots skilled. But for Coast Guard, pilots — anyone — to proclaim that chances of error or breakdown are nil suggests a conceit, a lack of respect for the unexpected, that contradicts the most basic tenets of seamanship.

Webmaster’s Comments: Let's not forget the two 2009 December incidents where US Coast Guard vessels rammed into other vessels, resulting in injury and death. See, "Feds probe Coast Guard vessel, boat collision," where the Coast Guard vessel hit and ran, without rendering assistance to the injured; and, "Father of Boy, 8, Killed in Boat Collision Says Coast Guard Vessel Sped Before Crash," where the Coast Guard vessel killed an 8-year old and injured five others.

Some who are responsible for safe vessel transit in Passamaquoddy Bay cannot conceive of any kind of incident happening, no matter what. Such an attitude is irresponsible and negligent, and increases the probabillity of an incident actually happening. Abiding by LNG industry terminal siting best practices would alleviate such concerns in Passamaquoddy Bay.

FERC planning on-site inspection of Lake Charles LNG facility — LNG Law Blog, Washington, DC

This inspection will serve as the Commission's annual post-certification review of the facility.

Chamber energy digest is a must — Trinidad & Tobago's Newsday, Port-of-Spain, Trinidad & Tobago

[Energy Minister Conrad Enill] also said that the successful development of shale gas in the US has contributed to a current low capacity utilisation of the LNG re-gasification terminals in North America and “this is likely to continue.” [Red, yellow & bold emphasis added.]

FERC Chairman says carbon emissions from upstream production and LNG transport should be accounted for in environmental review — LNG Law Blog, Washington, DC

Speaking at an event in Portland, Ore., FERC Chairman Jon Wellinghoff said that he believes life cycle greenhouse gas emissions of LNG, including GHG emissions from production and transport via vessel, should be included in the environmental review of LNG regasification terminals proposed in the United States. Chairman Wellinghoff also noted that FERC does not have the authority to make an affirmative policy decision over whether a company should be allowed to export LNG, but that the Commission can regulate the operational and environmental impacts of LNG export projects.

Webmaster’s Comments: FERC Chariman Wellinghoff is taking an appropriate stance on LNG's greater environmental impacts versus domestic natural gas.

BP chief: Unconventional gas ‘game changer' in U.S. — Houston Chronicle, Houston, TX

“It's a complete game changer in the U.S., certainly” and alters the U.S. energy outlook “for probably a hundred years,” the head of Europe's second-largest oil company said in a panel discussion in Davos, Switzerland today. “It is yet to be seen if the same can be applied globally.”

The increase in U.S. output has cut demand for ship-bound liquefied natural gas imports, diverting fuel to Europe and cutting prices. OAO Gazprom, Russia's gas export monopoly may delay its Shtokman gas export project because increased U.S. production will cut import demand, a report said this week. [Red & yellow emphasis added.]

Webmaster’s Comments: We're being told by industry experts, over and over again, that the US is drowning in domestic natural gas. Downeast LNG and Calais LNG are lost causes.

AGA chairman: U.S. not likely to become a major LNG exporter — LNG Law Blog, Washington, DC

Robert Skaggs, the chairman of the American Gas Association, told a gathering sponsored by the New York Society of Security Analysts yesterday that he does not expect LNG exports from the United States to increase dramatically in the coming years. Skaggs expects natural gas produced in the major U.S. shale plays to find markets in North America. [Red & yellow emphasis added.]

Webmaster’s Comments: Skaggs' assessment — keeping the ocean of US shale gas reserves in the US — would ensure that the US continues its more than ample supply of domestic natural gas; meaning less need for LNG imports for approximately the next 100 years.

Gazprom eating crow on shale gas? — Alaska Dispatch, Anchorage, AK

Near the end of last year, officials at Gazprom made strong statements that they doubted the impact that burgeoning shale gas development would have on the global natural gas market. But, new reports indicate the company is being forced to change its tune.

Webmaster’s Comments: North America's sea of natural gas resources is keeping us energy-secure from the likes of Russia. Downeast LNG and Calais LNG — if their projects were actually needed — would keep the US dependent on such unfriendly governments.


27 Jan 2010

Quoddy Bay LNG import & regasification terminal project — TRC, Lowell, MA

[TRC is suing Quoddy Bay LNG, Don Smith, and Brian Smith for non-payment and fraud. The link below lists the services TRC provided to the project.]

Quoddy Bay LNG, L.L.C. proposes to site, construct, and operate the Quoddy Bay LNG Import and Regasification Terminal Project at Pleasant Point and Perry, Washington County, Maine. The Project includes a 35.8-mile-long natural gas sendout pipeline to transport natural gas from the LNG Terminal to the interstate natural gas pipeline in the Town of Princeton. TRC is responsible for all permitting for the Quoddy Bay LNG Project.

Quoddy Bay LNG sued in Oklahoma over money allegedly owed to environmental contractor (Jan 26) — (AP) Canadian Business (CB Online), Toronto, ON

This AP story was also published by…

Quoddy Bay wanted to build the terminal on the Passamaquoddy Indian reservation in eastern Maine.

Medford Man convicted of lasering into a state police helicopter (Jan 26) — Aviation Online Magazine

Gerard Sasso of Medford, MA. was convicted today of shining a laser beam into a State Police helicopter that was escorting a liquid natural gas tanker (LNG) through Boston Harbor. Gerard Sasso, 51, of Medford, Massachusetts, was convicted today in U.S. District Court following a one-week jury trial of shining a powerful green laser beam into a State Police helicopter that was escorting a liquid natural gas tanker (LNG) through Boston Harbor, forcing the helicopter to abandon its escort mission.

Despite taking evasive action to avoid being hit, the pilots were struck by the laser beam, which filled the entire cockpit with an intense sparkling green light. [Red emphasis added.]

Webmaster’s Comments: This incident demonstrates how vulnerable LNG ship transit security could be to a creative terrorist.

An industry committed to safety, security [Opinion column] — Boston Globe, Boston, MA

The security regime surrounding LNG shipments is the most robust of any cargo imported into the United States.

Webmaster’s Comments: The imperfect US security regime surrounding LNG shipments* does not excuse violating LNG industry best safe practices — best practices that indicate, if the Everett LNG terminal were newly-proposed today, would not qualify as an appropriate location.

* LNG ship transit security is not all that infallible, as demonstrated in the story above this one, "Medford Man convicted of lasering into a state police helicopter."

R.I. still in fight against proposed LNG terminal — The Providence Journal, Providence, RI

PROVIDENCE — When a federal appeals court rejected efforts by the state’s coastal agency last fall to review plans for a liquefied natural gas terminal in Mount Hope Bay, some thought the state has lost its only chance to stop the terminal. But that is not so.

The state Department of Environmental Management has denied two applications filed by the LNG developers and both cases are alive in state and federal courts.

Bill would block too-tall LNG tankers — East Bay RI, Bristol, RI

STATE HOUSE — A five-foot gap between the top of a 950-foot liquefied natural gas tanker and the underside of the Mt. Hope Bridge is way too tight for comfort, an array of people told the Rhode Island House Committee on Environment and Natural Resources last week.

They were there to support legislation introduced by Rep. Douglas Gablinske (D. Bristol, Warren) that would require any ship longer than 150 feet with a cargo of hazardous material to clear Rhode Island’s bridges by at least 25 feet.

“Five feet is, frankly, a frighteningly small amount of space,” said RITBA [Rhode Islant Turnpike and Bridge Authority] Executive Director Buddy Croft.

[Rep. Raymond Gallison (D — Bristol, Portsmouth)] said the arrival of the tankers and construction of a mid-bay docking station would hurt fishing, tourism, pleasure boating and other industries, thus taking more jobs than an LNG facility might create. Calling Weaver’s Cove LNG “snake oil salesmen,” he challenged the company’s job numbers and said the arrival of LNG is the “number one fear” of the RI Marine Trades Association. [Red & yellow emphasis added.]

Maryland Seeks Ruling In Suit Over LNG Project (Jan 26) — Law360, New York, NY

Maryland's Department of the Environment has asked a court to vacate the U.S. Department of Commerce's approval of the controversial AES Sparrows Point LNG Terminal and Mid-Atlantic Express Pipeline Project, a decision Maryland argues Commerce made without essential information.

NorthernStar, Wahkiakum County discussing deal to use deputies for gas terminal security (Jan 26) — The Daily News, Longview, WA

…Wahkiakum County Sheriff Dan Bardsley said he's not sure this agency can afford the deputies NorthernStar Natural Gas is offering to pay for.

Bardsley said Tuesday that a potential deal between the county and NorthernStar to provide security for liquefied natural gas ships would cost his office about $80,000, more than 10 percent of the department's annual budget, even though NorthernStar would pay the new deputies' salaries. The extra costs would be for training, fuel and other equipment needed to accommodate a department that would double in size if it takes advantage of NorthernStar's offer.

New federal energy leader focuses on gas supply issues — The Daily Astorian, Astoria, OR [Paid subscription required]

At a conference for "green" professionals Tuesday, Wellinghoff said he would like FERC to consider the greenhouse gas emissions of new energy projects and their impact on climate change before granting approval, but he is waiting for the three votes he needs to make that a new policy.

Webmaster’s Comments: This bodes well for preventing the ill-sited Downeast LNG and Calais LNG projects proposed for Passamaquoddy Bay.

The century for natural gas — KCI Investing, Falls Church, VA

The rapid development of massive US unconventional natural gas plays has changed the supply outlook for the world's largest gas consumer. Just a few years ago, most forecasted that the US would need to import ever-larger quantities of liquefied natural gas (LNG) to meet growing demand; domestic supplies were dwindling, and Canada would no longer be able to supply enough gas via pipeline to meet demand.

But in recent quarters, America's problem has been one of too much natural gas; as recently as two months ago, many investors fretted over the potential for US gas storage to reach capacity. A severe economic downturn crippled domestic demand for natural gas conspired with a surge in supply from unconventional gas plays to test the limits of US storage facilities. [Red & yellow emphasis added.]

Update 1-Credit Suisse says plans to enter LNG trade — Reuters

Swiss bank Credit Suisse said on Wednesday it planned to join a growing number of large banks trading liquefied natural gas as the market opens up.

Credit Suisse will follow in the steps of Citigroup, Morgan Stanley, Goldman Sachs and, most recently, Barclays Capital, which all have entered the LNG buying game as the spot market grows.

Surge in U.S. gas production worries Gazprom (Jan 26) — (Agence France-Presse) Calgary Herald, Calgary, AB

MOSCOW - Russian energy giant Gazprom is concerned about losing markets due to a surprise surge in U.S. gas production driven by new extraction techniques, the Kommersant daily reported Tuesday.

The surge in U.S. gas production has already “led to the redirection of liquefied natural gas on the markets of EU countries,” said the document. [Red & yellow emphasis added.]

Shtokman gas may not come to US — Upstream Online, Norway

Gazprom together with partners Statoil and Total, had planned to send as much as 90% of Shtokman’s LNG to North America.

The project faces competition from rising shale-gas production in the US, which has already prompted suppliers such as BG Group to divert cargoes to other markets where prices for the fuel are higher. [Red & yellow emphasis added.]


26 Jan 2010

LNG Company Lawsuit — WABI, Bangor, ME

[I]n its lawsuit, TRC Environmental Corporation says Quoddy Bay stopping paying them. [Red & yellow emphasis added.]

Second lawsuit targets LNG developer — Mainebiz, Portland, ME

TRC claims it provided services for the Oklahoma-based developer from April 2006 through January 2008, but Quoddy Bay stopped paying the firm about 10 months earlier.

Coler & Colantonio Inc., a Massachusetts engineering firm, filed a lawsuit against Quoddy Bay last February, saying the company still owed it nearly $160,000 for work it did on the pipeline for the project. Quoddy Bay withdrew its application for state permits for the terminal in 2008, after federal regulators dismissed its application. [Red & yellow emphasis added.]

Environmental Consultancy Sues Quoddy Bay LNG — LNG Law Blog, Washington, DC

TRC Environmental Corporation, an environmental consulting firm, has filed a complaint in the U.S. District Court for the Western District of Oklahoma against Quoddy Bay LNG alleging unpaid bills of more than $1.2 million.This is the second lawsuit over unpaid invoices filed by a consulting firm against Quoddy Bay LNG. [Red & yellow emphasis added.]

LNG developer sued for payment (Jan 25) — (AP), Tulsa, OK

This AP story was also published by…

PLEASANT POINT, Maine (AP) - A company that performed environmental services for an Oklahoma company that wanted to build a liquefied natural gas terminal in Maine is suing for more than $1 million.

In a lawsuit in Oklahoma, TRC Environmental Corp. says it provided services for Quoddy Bay LLC from April 2005 through January 2008. But it says Quoddy Bay stopped paying the firm about 10 months earlier. The lawsuit targets the corporation and its principles. [Red & yellow emphasis added.]

Riley: Don’t depend on high gas prices — Trinidad & Tobago Guardian, Port-of-Spain, Trinidad & Tobago

“The emergence of quite a large amount of Liquefied Natural Gas (LNG) has removed the unique advantage that the we enjoyed for so long of being the first in the market. We now have to seek other ways of being competitive in a world of much heavier gas on gas competition.”

Surprise! More gas coming (Jan 27) — The Japan Times, Tokyo, Japan

[S]uddenly the picture is radically changing. Welcome to hydraulic fracturing, or "fracking" — a long-known but recently much-improved technique for extracting gas from shale far below the Earth's surface. This is not some future wizardry but a current development of huge significance. It is providing the world with gas at amazing speed. By deploying the new technology, gas producers in the United States are heading quickly toward producing all the gas that nation needs, with imports plummeting. Vast new facilities, like the Sabine Pass terminal in Texas, that were built to suck in shiploads of frozen gas (LNG) are virtually idle.

Already, around 15 percent of total American gas need is being met via this new and so-called unconventional source. This is expected to rise to more than 60 percent by 2020, which would amount to a quarter of the entire world's gas consumption. This will make the U.S. the world's largest gas producer, outstripping Russia and the Middle East, and giving America enough gas to last for 100 years. [Red, yellow & bold emphasis added.]

Gazprom to discuss strategy as U.S. market set to slip away — RIA Novosti, Moscow, Russia

Respected Russian business daily Kommersant reported on Tuesday that abundant shale gas has made the United States, the world's largest natural gas market, self-sufficient while surplus liquefied natural gas undermines the competitiveness of Russian natural gas in Europe.

The lack of revolutionary ideas from Gazprom's management to reverse negative trends jeopardizes the development of the huge Shtokman gas field in the Russian Arctic, which was primarily designed to cater to the U.S. and Canadian markets, the paper said. [Red & yellow emphasis added.]

Webmaster’s Comments: Unlike LNG terminal "wannabes" Downeast LNG and Calais LNG, experienced natural-gas giant Gazprom realizes there is no US market for additional LNG supplies and import infrastructure.


23 Jan 2010

Verso targets efficiency, savings with help from DOE (Jan 22) — Bangor Daily News, Bangor, ME

The project is part of an effort to move toward “green power,” according to Cohen

“We’ve been looking to see if we can do some things around biomass and green power,” Cohen said. “We’re going to make modifications to the boiler to make it significantly more green. We’re looking at burning far less fossil-based fuels. When we’re all done, this will be a huge investment in internal efficiencies and in the generation of green power.” [Red, yellow & bold emphasis added.]

Webmaster’s Comments: This is a welcome turn-about by Verso Paper.

Verso's Bill Cohen previously advocated for two new Maine LNG terminals while speaking at a Calais LNG-organized public rally/meeting. He also advocated for additional LNG terminals while on the phone to this webmaster, and in statements to the news media. Verso is now indicating their previous advocacy was wrong-headed.

Changing course when wrong is an admirable trait, and Verso Paper deserves being congratulated for it.

Government plans new CNG subsidies — Guardian, Port-of-Spain, Trinidad & Tobago

“At current levels of demand, the US has about 90 years of proven and potential supply and with more drilling experience, it is envisaged that US estimates will likely rise even further in the next few years. There are implications for T&T, as 70 per cent of our LNG shipped to the US,” Enill said. [Red & yellow emphasis added.]

We hear you loud and clear: FERC will look into complaints about Oregon LNG (Jan 22) — Natural Oregon

Today, the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission announced it will schedule a series of town meetings in Northwest Oregon to hear from landowners who are unhappy with the behavior of Oregon LNG employees and contractors during a recent field trip.

…FERC spokesman Sarah McKinley says it’s “pretty unusual” for the agency to take this kind of action.

Wellinghoff has been chairman for less than a year, and has consistently voted against LNG proposals. Another member, John Norris, is new to the commission. Serres describes him as an unknown quantity. Plus, there’s a vacancy yet to be filled by President Obama.

If all three members hold anti-LNG views, it would be enough to change the balance of power on FERC. [Red & yellow emphasis added.]

FERC Chair: Why I voted against Jordan Cove LNG (Dec 17) — Natural Oregon

Relying On Imported LNG: In his dissent, Wellinghoff says he is concerned about the environmental and economic impacts of increasing our reliance on foreign sources of LNG. He says Environmental Impact Statements (EIS) for both projects need to do a better of job of studying renewable energy as an alternative to LNG imports.

Outdated Information: Wellinghoff says FERC should be paying more attention to the recent news about natural gas supplies in the United States. He cites a new study produced by FERC staff showing a 100-year supply of domestic natural gas at current levels of demand. This is one-third more than previous estimates and is the result of better technology.

But the other FERC members who voted in favor of Jordan Cove say they’re not required to look at the new information.

Safety Hazards: Wellinghoff is also concerned that the Jordan Cove Plant would be located less than a mile away from the Southwest Regional Airport. He says that’s too close according to standards set by the Transportation Department. Next year, the airport expects to handle more than 50,000 take off and landings. The Chairman is concerned about the possibility of a airplane crash into the LNG terminal. [Red & yellow emphasis added.]

Webmaster’s Comments: Some FERC commissioners believe they should be able to ignore current circumstances, even when considering those changes are in the best interest of the public. Once again, FERC demonstrates its contempt for the public, in favor of big-energy stockholders.

Oregon gas terminals' futures hang on global supplies — The Oregonian, Portland, OR

U.S. LNG import terminals are operating at a fraction of their capacity. New terminals, including one in Baja Mexico, are sitting virtually idle. And the forecast for U.S. gas production and reserves is robust, thanks to new drilling techniques that allow producers to tap unconventional reserves.

"I don't see it at all," said Andrew Flower, a United Kingdom-based LNG consultant who follows industry facilities around the world. "I don't see how these projects work or where the need is for them. I'm amazed at the tenacity of some of these people who are still pushing forward."

One reason for the developers to push ahead with permitting is they've already invested so much money. If they abandon their projects now, they face certain losses. [Red & yellow emphasis added.]

Webmaster’s Comments: …as opposed to certain — and higher — losses later, as is the case with doomed Downeast LNG and Calais LNG.


22 Jan 2010

The role of LNG in the Northeast natural gas (and energy) market (Jan) — Northeast Gas Association (NGA), Needham Heights, MA

PDF file[The text below links to a PDF file.]

In the coming years it is anticipated that the global LNG market will be well-supplied. Indeed, the International Energy Agency (IEA) is noting the potential of a “global gas glut” in the coming decade. In No- vember 2009, the IEA released its updated “World Energy Outlook.” Among its observations:

Webmaster’s Comments: The NGA then goes on to advocate even more LNG import infrastructure — even though current infrastructure is operating at less than 9% capacity.

Canaport LNG: Third storage tank to be completed by early April — LNG Law Blog, Washington, DC

A company representative for Canaport LNG told Platts LNG Daily [subscription required] this week that it expects its third LNG storage tank to come online by early April of this year, increasing the storage capacity to approximately 9.9 Bcf and allowing greater use of the largest class of LNG vessels.

R.I. bill would stop LNG tankers from traveling under Mount Hope Bridge — The Providence Journal, Providence, RI

State legislators are considering a proposal that would prohibit liquefied natural gas tankers from traveling under the Mount Hope Bridge by banning any ship with hazardous cargo from passing under any Rhode Island bridge without a 25-foot clearance.

The supertankers ride 130 feet above the waterline. The bridge has a clearance of 135 feet.

[O]pponents seem to be taking a cue from Fall River, which stopped an earlier incarnation of the Weaver’s Cove plan — one that called for building the facility in Fall River — by blocking demolition of the old Brightman Street Bridge, which is too narrow and improperly aligned to accommodate the massive tankers.

David A. Darlington, chairman of the Rhode Island Turnpike and Bridge Authority, said 5 feet of clearance “is a frighteningly small amount of space,” and even minor contact with the structure could cause serious problems.

Natural gas stages winter surprise — Calgary Herald, Calgary, AB

[I]t has to be noted the amount of LNG being landed in the U.S. will remain dependent on the demand picture in Europe as well as Asia; assuming the recovery continues in the Asian countries, it is likely more LNG will be directed toward those markets and away from the United States. [Red & yellow emphasis added.]

State DEQ plans March 3 LNG meeting — The Daily Astorian, Astoria, OR

The Oregon Department of Environmental Quality will hold an informational meeting on the Bradwood Landing liquefied natural gas project from 6 p.m. to 9 p.m. March 3 at the Knappa High School gymnasium.

Only answer for U.S. natural gas investing — Stockhouse, Vancouver, BC

Right now, the U.S. is in the middle of a massive natural gas supply glut. And prices here have barely budged off eight-year lows. Demand abroad is huge and growing. But U.S. natural gas producers can't ship gas out to take advantage. There just aren't enough liquefied natural gas (LNG) export terminals. That's going to keep a lid on U.S. gas prices... and a lid on profits for U.S. gas producers. [Red, yellow & bold emphasis added.]


21 Jan 2010

U.S. natural gas supply: Then there was abundance [Energy analysis] — American Gas Association (AGA), Washington, DC

PDF file [The following linked text is to a PDF file.]

Natural gas is abundant in North America.

Natural gas resource abundance specific to the United States is currently being assessed and defined by groups such as the Potential Gas Committee (Colorado School of Mines). The numbers are large – 100 years of natural gas supply in the United States at current production levels – and they are poised to grow even more.

The United States currently boasts about 14 bcf per day of LNG import capacity. It has never been fully utilized. A strong day for vaporized LNG placed in to the domestic pipeline grid (based on history) has been 3-4 bcf per day. Permission to accept LNG, store it and ultimately re-export the liquid has been granted to some facilities on the U.S. gulf coast.

Domestic import capacity (about 13.5 bcf per day) far exceeds current import levels.

[T]otal U. S. LNG import capacity is currently only being used at a rate of 25 percent or less on most days.

By any measure these numbers indicate that U.S. LNG import capacity is underutilized. [Red, yellow & bold emphasis added.]

Webmaster’s Comments: The US already has 400% more LNG import infrastructure than is needed, with considerable additional LNG import terminal capacity already permitted or under construction.

Downeast LNG and Calais LNG would fulfill no purpose. They are wasting time, money, and effort, while building false hopes and ill-will.

TRC Environmental Corporation v. Quoddy Bay LNG LLC et al —, Federal District Court Filings and Dockets

Plaintiff: TRC Environmental Corporation
Defendant: Quoddy Bay LNG LLC, Donald Smith and Brian Smith

Case Number: 5:2010cv00062
Filed: January 20, 2010

Court: Oklahoma Western District Court
Office: Oklahoma City Office
Presiding Judge: Honorable Robin J. Cauthron

Jury Demanded By: Plaintiff

Webmaster’s Comments: This is the second lawsuit we are aware of by a supplier against Quoddy Bay LNG. The other suit was filed by Massachusetts company Coler & Colantonio Inc. in Maine's Washington County Superior Court for nonpayment of amount due for services rendered.

New Canaport GM 'one of the most knowledgeable officials' — Telegraph-Journal, Saint John, NB

SAINT JOHN - The site of Canaport LNG's liquefied natural gas terminal in Saint John offers room for even more expansion, but the facility's newly minted helmsman says he's focused on operating a profitable facility before making another major investment.

Adolfo Azcarraga, Canaport's general manager, said Wednesday the terminal's third tank is nearly finished and will be online this spring. And while there's room for another two tanks, he said he's not yet prepared to assemble construction crews.

"Right now, we're focusing on getting this running and we'll have to see what we'll do after that," Azcarraga said, sitting in his Saint John office just a few days after he was officially named into the new position. "After investing $1 billion, you have to make sure that you can start making money before investing anything additional." [Red emphasis added.]

Webmaster’s Comments: Canaport wants to make sure they can make a profit before expanding. Expansion is unlikely, due to the growing domestic natural gas glut in the US. Downeast LNG and Calais LNG are six or more years too late, with no future.

Security officers at high-profile sites: Andrews International cannot be trusted [News release] — Insecure With Andrews International, Service Employees International Union (SEIU)

BOSTON, MASS.--Security officers at four high-profile coastal security sites in Boston, Newark, San Francisco, and Los Angeles are speaking out today about the track record of fast-growing security firm Andrews International, which is currently under investigation by the Attorney General's Office of Massachusetts and by the National Labor Relations Board in Boston and New York.

In Boston… Some 50 Andrews International security officers are among the lowest paid workers at Distrigas' liquefied natural gas (LNG) terminal in Everett, despite homeland security concerns related to the site raised by local officials and news media.

Public records indicate that Andrews International has a long history of legal and ethical lapses.

In addition, Andrews International has hired unlicensed officers and failed to disclose required legal history information during a contact bidding process.

Andrews International is no stranger to costly legal complaints, illegal practices, and ethical lapses. Despite paying millions in settlements, penalties, and fines over the past several years, Andrews continues to face repeated complaints and violations alleging some of the same illegal practices time after time. [Red, yellow & bold emphasis added.]

Webmaster’s Comments: FERC — supposedly protecting the public around LNG terminals — is also culpable for not preventing this ongoing security problem.

Council fast tracks turbine — The Jamestown Press, Jamestown, RI

The council was unequivocal … in turning down a pair of draft resolutions opposing the liquefied natural gas facility proposed for Mt. Hope Bay. The council had previously endorsed such a resolution, but faulted various aspects of the drafts submitted by Winsor on behalf of the LNG Working Group.

Murphy and White both expressed a preference for the “general language” in the LNG resolution passed by the General Assembly and co-sponsored by Rep. Deborah Ruggiero.

AES Corp. files for rehearing of LNG court decision (Jan 20) — The Dundalk Eagle, Dundalk, MD

On Friday, Virginia-based AES Corp. filed to appeal the Dec. 22 decision of a panel of judges from the U.S. 4th Circuit Court of Appeals. That decision upheld the Maryland Department of the Environment’s April 24 denial of a water quality certification, a Clean Water Act requirement of the reportedly $400 million terminal project and associated 88-mile pipeline to Eagle, Pa.

Gulf LNG submits report detailing environmental monitoring efforts — LNG Law Blog, Washington, DC

Yesterday Gulf LNG submitted its Annual Monitoring Report detailing its environmental monitoring efforts to the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers.

LNG in Oregon — Daily Journal of Commerce, Portland, OR

Bradwood Landing: NorthernStar Natural Gas has proposed an LNG receiving terminal on 55 acres between Astoria and Clatskanie on the Columbia River. It is designed to have a peak send-out capacity of 1.3 billion cubic feet of natural gas per day.

Jordan Cove: An LNG import terminal in the International Port of Coos Bay is designed to import and transport 1 billion cubic feet of natural gas per day. The Pacific Connector project would connect the new facility to the Northwest Pipeline near Myrtle Creek, Avista Corp.’s distribution system near Shady Cove, as well as Pacific Gas and Electric Co.’s gas transmission system, Tuscarora Gas Transmission’s system, and Gas Transmission Northwest’s system, all located near Malin.

Oregon LNG: An LNG import facility located on the Skipanon Peninsula in Warrenton is designed to include a marine receiving terminal, three full-containment 160,000-cubic-meter LNG storage tanks and facilities to support ship berthing and cargo offloading. A 120-mile pipeline, which would connect to the regional pipeline hub in Molalla, is included.

Port says Red Lion can open again (Jan 20) — The Daily Astorian, Astoria, OR [Paid subscription required]

In other business Tuesday, the [Port Commission] board:

State leaders, environmental groups take aim at feds (Jan 19) — The Daily Astorian, Astoria, OR [Paid subscription required]

Western Environmental Law Center attorney Susan Jane Brown says the petition lists numerous claims that the decision violated various laws, ranging from requirements to show a need for the energy, to threats to fish and wildlife on public lands.

"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," [Attorney General John Kroger] said. [Red & yellow emphasis added.]

Approval of gas terminal draws several appeals (Jan 20) — The Register-Guard, Eugene, OR

The state of Oregon, a coalition of local and environmental groups, the National Marine Fisheries Service and one of the project’s developers all filed appeals of the decision.

“The commission should withdraw its order until consultation has been completed,” [Laurie Beale, an attorney with the agency’s parent, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration] wrote.

The state also claimed the commission “erroneously determined that the Jordan Cove project was in the public interest,” and that its analysis of environmental impacts is “inadequate."

Both sides ask feds to rethink LNG decision — The World, Coos Bay, OR

Gov. Ted Kulongoski, Citizens Against LNG, the National Marine Fisheries Service and Pacific Connector Gas Pipeline all agree on one thing. The Federal Energy Regulatory Commission needs to reconsider its decision to approve the Jordan Cove project.

"FERC diminishes the statutory role reserved by Congress to the state by issuing its approval before the state has certified compliance with water quality standards," it read.

"It's FERC's obligation to follow the laws of our land and we find they ignored them on a grand scale," said Harry Stamper of Charleston, one of the petitioners asking for a rehearing. [Red & yellow emphasis added.]

FERC asked to rethink LNG project — The News-Review, Douglas County, OR

The move is an attempt to get FERC to reconsider its decision to approve the project, which it made Dec. 17 in a 3-1 vote. According to a press release from Kroger's office, FERC's decision failed to satisfy the federal Clean Water Act and the Coastal Zone Management Act. [Red emphasis added.]

Oregon, others petition FERC to halt gas pipeline — Ashland Daily Tidings, Ashland, OR

"It is time for FERC to stop catering to outdated energy systems of the past and get on board with energy-independent, energy-efficient, renewable energy systems of the future," said Coos Bay resident Jody McCaffree, an opponent of the project since it was first proposed in 2005. [Red & yellow emphasis added.]

MAC tackles the death of an expert (Jan 20) — The Maritime Executive, Fort Lauderdale, FL

The Case of the Forgotten Assassin is based on an incident in which a well-experienced consultant died on an LNG carrier in a shipyard due to an explosion in a boiler steam drum following chemical cleaning procedures.

His last words were: “I cannot believe I have been caught like this.”

“… He was largely left to his own devices because he was an expert and there was little examination of whether he was working safely. On other occasions he probably did, but this time, perhaps because of a distraction, he forgot to take particular precautions. Very simple measures would have removed the hazard entirely.”

Says Couttie: “Several people noticed things that were not quite right but didn't ask the victim about it or alert him, possibly because they thought 'he's the expert so we don't need to tell him.'

Webmaster’s Comments: Although this fatality was not caused by LNG, this is a perfect example of human error by multiple people who all knew better, but who allowed this fatality to occur.

This is precisely why SIGTTO LNG terminal siting best practices should be the minimum standards applied where public safety is at risk.

SIGTTO recognizes that human error can not be ruled out, so for the health of the industry and the public, LNG terminals must be sited where an LNG release from ship or terminal cannot affect civilian populations. (See for more about SIGTTO LNG terminal siting best practices.)


19 Jan 2010

LNG and Yemen: A combustible mix [Editorial] — The Boston Globe, Boston, MA

Consequences could be dire. An LNG fire involving a typical tank of about 6 million gallons (most ships hold five such tanks) would incinerate everything within a quarter of a mile, according to a study by Jerry Havens, a chemical hazards expert at the University of Arkansas. A 2004 study for the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission calculated that a fire from a breach in an LNG tanker could burn victims up to 4,600 feet away. [Distrigas president Frank Katulak] says those studies were not based on reliable data. But who wants to contemplate dueling studies with the prospect of a flammable vapor cloud overhead? Not the tens of thousands of people living within a mile of Boston Harbor.

LNG shipments are intrinsically risky in a built-up area like Boston. But if they must arrive, let it be from the fjord-indented coastline of Norway, not the jihadist-infested countryside of Yemen.

R.I. Senate forms task force to review latest LNG plan (Jan 15) — The Herald News, Fall River, MA

PROVIDENCE — President of the Senate M. Teresa Paiva Weed, D-Newport, has established a special Senate task force to review the proposed construction of a liquefied natural gas offshore loading platform in Mount Hope Bay adjacent to Fall River and Somerset. The task force will be chaired by Sen. Charles J. Levesque, D-Bristol.

Levesque observed: “The proposed LNG terminal could have a dramatic impact on the quality of life for Rhode Islanders, particularly those in coastal communities, and there are numerous questions with regard to potential dangers. The task force will carefully examine how much of a security threat the proposal creates, the impact of the disruption to commercial and recreational boating, traffic concerns related to the periodic closure of the Pell and Mount Hope bridges, and ultimately the proposal’s potential impact upon Rhode Islanders from an economic, environmental and public safety standpoint.”

No decision yet on another license to export at LNG plant — KSRM-AM, Radio Kenai, Kenai, AK

The LNG plant has to apply to the Department of Energy for the export extension. He said the length of time would be decided upon by ConocoPhillips and Marathon, who are the co-owners of the plant. He did admit that the last export extension license was very difficult to obtain. He also admitted that there needs to be support within the local area for another export extension license.

Rohne got it right [Editorial] — The Daily Astorian, Astoria, OR

Corporate special pleaders should come through the front door

The question was whether Clatsop County commissioners should meet privately with representatives of Palomar Gas Transmission, the backers of a pipeline project that is related to proposals for liquefied natural gas terminals. Palomar executives sought private conversation with commissioners, so they could skirt Oregon's public meetings law.

The four commissioners who met with Palomar misunderstand their role. No doubt, their egos were flattered by having a private audience with Palomar Project Manager Henry Morse. But the commissioners don't work for Morse; they work for the public. Over the past three years, county commissioners have mistakenly acted as though they work for Northern Star LLC, developer of the Bradwood LNG terminal, not for the public. That is a common malady among politicians. You see it in Washington, D.C., where the banking lobby and the insurance lobby dictate the limits of congressional action. [Red & bold emphasis added.]

Oregon LNG provides additional environmental data — LNG Law Blog, Washington, DC

Responding to an environmental data request from FERC, Oregon LNG has submitted information regarding potential impacts of the project on water resources in the surrounding area.

Diverse coalition files challenge of risky foreign energy project —, Salem, OR

Jody McCaffree, resident of the Coos Bay Area, stated, “The violations of law in FERC's approval of this project are so severe it took 185 pages just for our attorneys to list them. It is time for FERC to stop catering to outdated energy systems of the past and get on board with energy independent, energy efficient, renewable energy systems of the future."

“This intrusion on private property rights and the Oregon environment is not justified by a project that will increase our dependence on foreign source natural gas when the domestic supply of natural gas is sufficient to meet U.S. needs for the foreseeable future”.

LNG opponents appeal decision — The World, Coos Bay, OR

Opponents of the liquefied natural gas terminal proposed for Coos Bay's North Spit have asked federal regulators to reconsider its approval of the project.

Gov. Ted Kulongoski also has said he plans to request a rehearing. The governor has until 2 p.m. today.

The opponents contend regulators didn't demonstrate a need for imported LNG, didn't give enough consideration to alternative projects and rushed in making their decision.

Enviros seek rehearing of Jordan Cove LNG port — (AP) KTVZ, Bend, OR

Western Environmental Law Center attorney Susan Jane Brown says the petition lists numerous claims that the decision violated various laws, ranging from requirements to show a need for the energy, to threats to fish and wildlife on public lands.

U.S. shale basins — iStockAnalyst

Three years ago, I never would have thought I'd be seeing anyone else except Russia atop the energy throne.

…Russia has finally been dethroned. In 2009, the U.S. replaced Russia as the world's largest natural gas producer. [Red & yellow emphasis added.]

Webmaster’s Comments: The US is drowning in domestic natural gas. Downeast LNG and Calais LNG are moot.


18 Jan 2010

LNG terminal critic will chair R.I. Senate review panel (Jan 17) — The Providence Journal, Providence, RI

Sen. Charles J. Levesque, D-Portsmouth, said his group “will carefully examine how much of a security threat the proposal creates, the impact of the disruption to commercial and recreational boating, traffic concerns related to the periodic closure of the Pell and Mount Hope bridges, and ultimately the proposal’s potential impact upon Rhode Islanders from an economic, environmental and public safety standpoint.”

Meanwhile, in an apparent attempt to block the project, five members of the House have submitted legislation blocking any large ship whose primary cargo is hazardous material from passing under a bridge unless it can clear the structure with 25 feet to spare. The bill would not apply to sailing ships.

Webmaster’s Comments: Elected officials in Rhode Island and Massachusetts have more regard for their constituents' safety than do US Sen. Olympia Snowe, US Sen. Susan Collins, US Rep. Mike Michaud, and Maine Gov. John Baldacci — all of whom favor violating LNG industry best safe practices in Passamaquoddy Bay.

Forum: Tough year expected: Market size, economics discourage Cook Inlet oil, gas exploration (Jan 17) — Peninsula Clarion, Kenai Peninsula, AK

ConocoPhillips' license to export Liquefied Natural Gas (LNG) expires in March of 2011, and the company's Cook Inlet assets manager was non-committal on the issue of renewal.

"No decisions have been made for any period beyond that," Dan Clark said. ConocoPhillips' initial exporting license was good for 20 years, while the most recent license was good for only two, according to Clark.

LNG proponents, critics hone arguments — Daily Journal of Commerce, Portland, OR

The question surrounding construction of Liquefied Natural Gas facilities and associated pipelines in Oregon for the past few years has been, is there a need?

And with Rep. Chuck Riley’s (D-Hillsboro) introduction of a new act that would require companies to prove the need for imported LNG, both sides are again preparing their arguments for and against the facilities.

Whether LNG facilities are needed in Oregon is a contentious issue. Proponents of the facilities, such as NorthernStar Natural Gas, which plans to build the Bradwood Landing LNG facility near Astoria, say that Oregon’s current practice of importing two-thirds of its natural gas from Canada will not be viable in the future as demand increases in Canada for the natural resource and exports of natural gas to the US diminish. The remaining one-third of Oregon’s natural gas comes from the Rockies.

Webmaster’s Comments: The Kitimat LNG export terminal being built in British Columbia blows holes in NorthernStar's argument that Canadian domestic demand will reduce the possibility of natural gas exports to Oregon.

Will the U.S. need Canadian natural gas? Apache hedges its bets — Seeking Alpha

They [Apache] see the US market for Canadian natural gas is dropping, as fast rising US production of low cost shale gas makes Canadian gas uncompetitive and increasingly unnecessary.

“The growing supply of natural gas in the United States and Canada is transforming North American energy markets, and this increased resource has significant potential for global impact,” said Apache CEO G. Steven Farris in the news release announcing the deal. [Red & yellow emphasis added.]

Special report: US energy demand set for slim expansion in 2010 — Oil & Gas Journal, Houston, TX

US imports of gas will move lower again this year, but by a much smaller margin than the 2009 drop. A hike in imports of LNG was unable to overcome a loss of imports from Canada and Mexico last year, such that total imports fell to 3.735 tcf from a total of 3.984 tcf a year earlier.

Webmaster’s Comments: Domestic growth of natural gas resources is inhibiting growth in natural gas and LNG imports. The US is drowning in domestic natural gas resources.


16 Jan 2010

Minister resigning — Telegraph-Journal, Saint John, NB

Exclusive: Departure of Greg Thompson will trigger a small cabinet shuffle within week

Thompson is resigning, effective immediately, as minister of veterans affairs and as New Brunswick's senior representative in Prime Minister Stephen Harper's Conservative government.

He will remain as the Member of Parliament for New Brunswick Southwest until the next federal election, at which time he will not re-offer.

All those years of hopping jets to travel the world have worn him down, he said. Meanwhile, in this part of the world, the enticements of home life with his wife, Linda, proved more and more irresistible. [Red emphasis added.]

Webmaster’s Comments: Member of Parliament Thompson's departure from Cabinet does not change Canada's resolve to prohibit LNG from Passamaquoddy Bay.

MP Thompson has been a good friend and a steadfast opponent of the LNG proposals in Passamaquoddy Bay. We wish him well.

Canaport LNG bills allegedly unpaid — Telegraph-Journal, Saint John, NB

A spokeswoman for Canaport LNG said the company is not directly involved in the dispute and directed any questions to SNC-Lavalin, a partner in SNC-SNAM. [Bold emphasis added.]

Natural gas under Gulf may be too much of a good thing (Jan 15) — Houston Chronicle, Houston, TX

A big uptick in output from the emerging region — predicted this week after announcement of a major discovery there — would clearly signal new life for the heavily explored offshore region. But it could also boost already swollen U.S. gas supplies, weaken prices and keep producers on the sidelines.

A team led by New Orleans' McMoRan Exploration Co. said this week it made one of the biggest discoveries in the Gulf's shallow waters in decades.

“We've found ourselves in the past few years, thinking, be careful what you wish for because it might come true. All the sudden we have gas everywhere now,” said Tyler Priest, director of global studies at the University of Houston's Bauer College of Business. [Red, yellow & bold emphasis added.]

Webmaster’s Comments: The US is drowning in even more domestic natural gas, with even more than that likely to be discovered. Downeast LNG and Calais LNG are destructive, wasteful proposals with no practical purpose.


15 Jan 2010

World: Yemen LNG already diverting from Boston; money, not politics key (Jan 18) — Natural Gas Week, Energy Intelligence [subscription required]

Yemen LNG has diverted almost 30% of its cargoes since it started LNG production in October, and remains confident it can find attractive new markets for gas previously earmarked for GDF Suez' Everett terminal in Boston harbor if local officials ban imports from Yemen over security concerns. The Total-led LNG project, which has only one 3.35 million ton per year train operating, has already diverted two out of seven cargoes, a well-placed industry source tells WGI. [Red emphasis added.]

Webmaster’s Comments: Overseas has the greatest market for LNG, and is paying the highest price. The US is drowning in domestic natural gas.

NECN Exclusive: Inside Boston's offshore LNG terminal — New England Cable News (NECN), Newton, MA

[For more reportage, see the video on the linked page, below.]

…As controversy rages in Boston about LNG tanker shipments into Boston Harbor, in an NECN exclusive, reporter Peter Howe and videographer Mike Bellwin on Thursday got to be the first journalists aboard a new offshore LNG terminal that keeps fuel deliveries 18 miles offshore.

"Not a lot of people realize that we're out here, we're delivering gas consistently, and that's a good thing for us,'' Bryngelson said. "We're out of sight, we're out of mind for most people. We keep the operations well offshore and away from densely populated areas." An extraordinary operation few New Englanders will ever see -- but will feel in a cozy home or office on a chilly winter day. [Bold red emphasis added.]

Chelsea, Boston Harbor and LNG [Editorial] (Jan 14) — Chelsea Record, Chelsea, MA

Presently, the tankers come and go into and out of Boston Harbor unimpeded by security checks or advanced anti-terrorist measures.

Mayor Menino and City Manager Ash believe this is a mistake.

We agree.

It will take [only] one mistake, one overlooked important moment for the entire area to become the victim of incineration at the hands of Yemeni terrorist, shipmates who are terrorists or terrorists intent on disabling and setting afire the ship inside the harbor.

R.I. Senate forms task force to review latest LNG plan — The Herald News, Fall River, MA

Providence — President of the Senate M. Teresa Paiva Weed, D-Newport, has established a special Senate task force to review the proposed construction of a liquefied natural gas offshore loading platform in Mount Hope Bay adjacent to Fall River and Somerset. The task force will be chaired by Sen. Charles J. Levesque, D-Bristol.

Levesque observed: “The proposed LNG terminal could have a dramatic impact on the quality of life for Rhode Islanders, particularly those in coastal communities, and there are numerous questions with regard to potential dangers. The task force will carefully examine how much of a security threat the proposal creates, the impact of the disruption to commercial and recreational boating, traffic concerns related to the periodic closure of the Pell and Mount Hope bridges, and ultimately the proposal’s potential impact upon Rhode Islanders from an economic, environmental and public safety standpoint.”

R.I. Senate to examine latest LNG plan — Providence Business News, Providence, RI

R.I. Gov. Donald L. Carcieri, Rhode Island Attorney General Patrick C. Lynch, Mass. Gov. Deval L. Patrick and a host of environmental organizations have opposed the project, which has been pitched in different forms over the years.

It is unclear what power Rhode Island actually holds over the decision. The U.S. Court of Appeals ruled in November that the state lost its chance to intervene in the matter after the R.I. Coastal Resources Management Council (CRMC) took too long to schedule hearings on the proposal. [Red emphasis added.]

Senate task force to study LNG proposal — The Providence Journal, Providence, RI

Sen. Charles J. Levesque, D-Portsmouth, said his group "will carefully examine how much of a security threat the proposal creates, the impact of the disruption to commercial and recreational boating, traffic concerns related to the periodic closure of the Pell and Mount Hope bridges, and ultimately the proposal's potential impact upon Rhode Islanders from an economic, environmental and public safety standpoint."

Meanwhile, in an apparent attempt to stop the project, five members of the House have submitted legislation blocking any large ship whose primary cargo is hazardous material from passing under a bridge unless it can clear the structure with 25 feet to spare. The bill would not apply to sailing ships. [Red emphasis added.]

LNG tankers diverted — Houston Chronicle, Houston, TX

In the past week several liquified natural gas tankers headed for U.S. ports have either been delayed until next month or redirected to Asian markets, notes the weekly update from WaterBorne Energy.

One tanker slated to arrive at Sabine Pass on January 18th has been redirected to China from Nigeria. Another tanker, the "Mesaimeer", which was previously expected to arrive in late January at Sabine Pass from Qatar, has slipped into early February while another cargo - this one from Egypt - that had been expected to deliver at Elba Island at the end of January is now heading to Asia on the "Clean Energy". [Bold red emphasis added.]

Webmaster’s Comments: Asia is increasing its LNG imports, paying more than US markets. The market for LNG is overseas. Downeast LNG and Calais LNG are projects with no future.


14 Jan 2010

Company extends land agreement with Guysborough — 101.5 FM, Port Hawkesbury, NS

The land would be home to the proposed Maple LNG project in Goldboro.

In September, a Maple LNG official said the original 2012 proposed start date was no longer likely.

Coast Guard ramps up security for Yemen LNG (Jan 13) — (AP) WCVB-TV, Boston, MA

Concerns about the LNG tankers were first raised following the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks, when critics of the deliveries raised the specter of a massive fireball engulfing waterfront neighborhoods if one of the tankers were successfully detonated.

Interim U.S. Sen. Paul Kirk also attended the meeting and said state and federal officials should be thinking long term about safer methods to deliver natural gas, other than bringing the giant tankers so close to populated areas like Everett, Chelsea and nearby Boston neighborhoods. [Red, yellow & bold emphasis added.]

Webmaster’s Comments: Sen. Kirk is suggesting state & federal officials require compliance with LNG industry terminal siting best practices — LNG industry best practices that LNG developers, FERC, and the Coast Guard ignore.

Summit to debate risks of delivery of LNG from Yemen (Jan 13) — The Boston Globe, Boston, MA

The proposed shipment of liquefied natural gas from Yemen into Boston Harbor starting next month has set off a flurry of meetings among state and local officials seeking to block or delay the deliveries.

With the Coast Guard moving toward a decision, House Speaker Robert A. DeLeo, whose hometown of Winthrop borders the harbor, has scheduled a safety summit today at the State House to debate the potential risks of allowing ships carrying flammable gas, especially from a country identified as a haven for terrorists, so close to the densely populated metropolitan area.

[Boston Mayor Thomas M. Menino] had pledged to try to stop the ships from entering the harbor, but an aide said his options are limited.

Senate President Therese Murray, weighing in for the first time, said if the tankers were arriving in her district she would be “out there fighting for a better alternative, a safer place. You don’t want it coming into a highly populated area.

Local LNG security draws scrutiny (Jan 13) — Gloucester Daily Times, Gloucester, MA

While the focus right now is on Boston Harbor, Suez expects to open the Neptune terminal in the middle of next month south of Gloucester Harbor and begin receiving LNG shipments from a number of international sources including Yemen.

"The Homeland Security threat assessment level assigned to Gloucester is completely inadequate, and the city does not have the capacity to protect itself in the event of an LNG disaster," Mayor Kirk said in a statement. "Gloucester's Homeland Security status needs to change so that we are included in the port city area with Boston rather than with the suburbs such as Wenham." [Red, yellow & bold emphasis added.]

Coast Guard, lawmakers discuss security ahead of LNG Shipments — New England Cable News (NECN), Newton, MA

[For more reportage, see the video on the linked page, below.]

The potential danger posed by liquefied natural gas shipments from Yemen was the topic of a summit Wednesday at the Massachusetts State House.

Council willing to spend money in LNG fight —, RI

At last Wednesday’s town council meeting, members spent significant time debating the plan, passing a resolution in opposition to the LNG terminal and stating their readiness to pledge funds for a legal defense to fight Hess.

Council Chairman Kenneth Marshall said the proposed LNG terminal is a very serious issue that will have widespread consequences for Bristol and all East Bay communities. He said it is a sad situation when local communities need to play catch-up to a haphazard act by the federal government. [Bold red emphasis added.]

U.S. energy firm Apache buys 51 per cent stake in Kitimat LNG [export] project in B.C. (Jan 13) — (The Canaidan Press)

Wednesday's announcement follows a memorandum of understanding signed last summer, in which Apache agreed to supply between 200 million and 300 million cubic feet of natural gas per day to the Kitimat facility with an option to buy an equity stake in the project.

"The shale plays in North America have changed the market dramatically," said Tim Wall, who heads up Apache's Canadian unit.

Kitimat LNG was originally conceived as an import terminal, but recognizing a fundamental shift in the North American marketplace, decided late last year to reverse it.

With drilling technology constantly improving, energy companies have been able to more cheaply and effectively exploit the huge reserves of natural gas trapped in North American shale gas reservoirs, leading to a supply glut on the continent. [Red, yellow & bold emphasis added.]

Webmaster’s Comments: North America is drowning in a glut of domestic natural gas. Downeast LNG and Calais LNG are projects with nowhere to go.

Wyden encourages healthy debate — The Daily Astorian, Astoria, OR

Wyden held fast to his argument that approving LNG facilities should be the state's job, and that the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission process is "totally disfunctional and not serving the needs of Oregonians."

He said the Energy Policy Act of 2005 took the approval power away from the states and put it in federal hands because "powerful special interests wanted to take it back to Washington D.C. where they could hot-wire these decisions."

Wyden sits on the Senate Energy Committee, and said he is ready to revisit the legislation he cosponsored in 2008 that would put approval decisions back in the state's hands. His cosponsor on that bill, he pointed out, was a young senator from Illinois when it was first proposed and "now has a new job as our commander in chief." He said he is going to ask President Obama to support the bill once again. [Red, yellow & bold emphasis added.]

Rohne boycotts pipeline briefings — The Daily Astorian, Astoria, OR

"(LNG representatives) met with all the Port Commissioners and the Warrenton elected officials individually," he said in a phone interview. "The end result is that people (officials) think they're doing a favor."

During the commissioners' reports at the Wednesday morning board meeting, Rohne stated that he had asked for the meetings to be public. Because Palomar was not seeking board approval, his request was denied.

"In a public meeting, at the very least, we're all being told the same thing at the same time," he said.

LNG appeal not heard by Douglas County commissioners — The News-Review, Douglas County, OR

Douglas County commissioners on Wednesday declined to hear an appeal over approval of a conditional use permit to allow a liquefied natural gas pipeline to be constructed along a 7.3-mile section of land at Camas Valley.


12 Jan 2010

LNG firm files plan with FERC for Calais site (Jan 8) — The Quoddy Tides, Eastport, ME

While the need for new LNG terminals in the U.S. is now being questioned, with increases in domestic gas supplies, Art Gelber, one of the four partners in Calais LNG, maintains, "The demand today is greater than it's ever been" in the northeastern U.S. With current high prices for natural gas and heating oil, there is "an ample marketplace for natural gas," both for residential use and for producing electricity. "Calais LNG will service the growing markets of the region," Gelber says. Other possible markets can be developed through initiatives to burn cleaner fuels and to provide backup fuel for wind power projects.

Many industry journals and experts, though, are reporting that natural gas reserves in the U.S. and Canada are sufficient to meet the demand for more than 100 years and that the U.S. LNG import terminal sector is overbuilt. However, Gelber maintains that it will be difficult to bring LNG from shale gas reserves in the U.S. to New England markets, because the pipeline capacity is "bottlenecked." [Red, yellow & bold emphasis added.]

Webmaster’s Comments: Calais LNG's Art Gelber is paradoxically out of touch with the actual price of natural gas.

Natural gas prices reached record levels in 2008. Maine's 2008 June residential price was $21.61 per thousand cubic feet, according to the US Energy Information Agency (EIA). The 2009 June residential price was just 14.28 — 34% below the 2008 June price.

Maine's 2009 October residential price dropped even further, to $13.46 — 38% below the 2008 June price. [More recent average Maine residential natural gas prices are not yet available from the EIA.]

[For more LNG/natural gas facts, analysis, and forecasting, see the 2010 January 12 EIA "Short-term energy outlook," below.]

Calais LNG is engaging in smoke-and-mirrors "facts" and "logic."

Riley introduces Domestic Resource Protection Act — The Hillsboro Argus, Hillsboro, OR

Riley's Domestic Resource Protection Act is in response to the three encroaching liquefied natural gas terminals and associated pipelines that are proposed for construction in Oregon - Bradwood Landing on the Columbia River, Oregon LNG in Astoria, and Jordan Cove in Coos Bay.

"These companies have yet to prove that we, in the Northwest, need imported foreign natural gas," Riley said. "HB 3616 requires that prior to the state giving these companies the power to seize land from private citizens they must show that we do not have domestic natural gas resources to meet our needs."

"This is sound fiscal policy," Riley said. "The public should not have to pay the thousands of dollars required by these private corporations' business ventures." [Red, yellow & bold emphasis added.]

Webmaster’s Comments: This bill will require the State of Oregon to do what FERC should do, but refuses to do.

Judge denies Port of Astoria motion to dismiss LNG lawsuit — The Daily Astorian, Astoria, OR

Judge Michael Mossman agreed with a magistrate judge's recommendation last week and ordered that the Port's motion to dismiss be denied.

Oregon LNG is suing the Port for delaying a 30-year renewal of its lease of state land for the company's proposed liquefied natural gas terminal in Warrenton.

Oregon DOE approves Jordan Cove LNG's Emergency Response Plan (Jan 11) — LNG Law Blog, Washington, DC

Last week the Oregon Department of Energy announced that it has approved the emergency response plan submitted by Jordan Cove LNG.

Jordan Cove LNG formally accepts FERC's authorization — LNG Law Blog, Washington, DC

Jordan Cove Energy Project, L.P. yesterday filed its formal acceptance of FERC's authorizations of the Jordan Cove LNG import project and associated Pacific Connector Gas Pipeline.

Feds move on gas line — The World, Coos Bay, OR

BILLINGS, Mont. — Federal regulators are recommending approval of two natural gas pipelines that could sharply increase fuel shipments from the Rockies to population centers in the Midwest and on the West Coast.

El Paso Corp.’s $3 billion Ruby pipeline would run from Opal, Wyo., to Malin, passing through Utah and Nevada along a 675-mile route.

Malin is also the final destination for a proposed pipeline connected to the proposed liquefied natural gas import terminal on Coos Bay’s North Spit.

Webmaster’s Comments: Such a pipeline could moot the LNG import projects in Oregon.

Short-term energy outlook — U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA), Department of Energy, Washington, DC

…EIA forecasts that recent additions to global liquefied natural gas (LNG) supply in Russia, Yemen, Qatar, and Indonesia will cause U.S. LNG imports to increase by almost 0.5 Bcf/d in 2010 to 1.76 Bcf/d. EIA expects U.S. LNG imports to increase slightly in 2011, as growing global demand for LNG absorbs the new supply growth.

U.S. Natural Gas Inventories. On January 1, 2010, working natural gas in storage was 3,123 Bcf (U.S. Working Natural Gas in Storage Chart), 316 Bcf above the previous 5-year average (2005-2009) and 286 Bcf above the level during the corresponding week last year. Colder-than-normal temperatures in December 2009 contributed to an estimated storage withdrawal of 665 billion cubic feet, 32 percent above the previous 5-year average December drawdown. The weekly withdrawal of 207 Bcf during the week ending December 11, 2009, was the largest weekly December drawdown since the week ending December 29, 2000, when 208 Bcf was withdrawn. Despite the large December draw and a projected first-quarter 2010 inventory withdrawal about 6 percent greater than the previous 5-year average, the expected end-of-March 2010 storage level of 1,734 Bcf will be about 16 percent (237 Bcf) greater than the previous 5-year average for that period.

U.S. Natural Gas Prices. The Henry Hub spot price averaged $5.50 per Mcf in December 2009, $1.73 per Mcf higher than the average spot price in November (Henry Hub Natural Gas Price Chart). Prices were affected by the colder-than-normal weather in December, which contributed to an increase of 2.2 Bcf/d in total consumption during December compared with the forecast in last month’s Outlook. The Henry Hub spot price averaged $4.06 per Mcf in 2009, and the forecast price averages $5.36 per Mcf in 2010 and $6.12 per Mcf in 2011. Continued high storage levels combined with enhanced domestic production capabilities and slow consumption growth are expected to keep prices from rising dramatically through the forecast. [Red, yellow & bold emphasis added.]

Webmaster’s Comments: The 2010 predicted increase in LNG imports amounts to only ½ the daily capacity of just one large existing LNG terminal — and existing terminals are running at below 10% of capacity. Predicted additional imports are insignificant as compared to existing capacity.

It is clearly evident that Downeast LNG and Calais LNG are not needed.

U.S. overtakes Russia as biggest natural gas producer (Update1) — Bloomberg News

The U.S. growth trend may indicate that Gazprom will not be able to break into the U.S. market as it had planned, Mikhail Korchemkin, head of East European Gas Analysis, said today by telephone today from Malvern, Pennsylvania.

The surprising boost shale gas has given U.S. output has closed the world’s biggest energy consumer to some imports and “created a huge oversupply of LNG in Europe,” Korchemkin said. [Red, yellow & bold emphasis added.]

Webmaster’s Comments: Natural gas industry news keeps repeating the obvious: Downeast LNG and Calais LNG have no future.

Economic casual dating [Commentary] (2009 Dec 21) — Russia Profile, Moscow, Russia

Until recently, there was hope for a future increase in liquefied natural gas (LNG) shipments to the growing American market. The latest news that in the United States, gas recovery from shale deposits is quickly gaining ground makes this increase unlikely. [Red & yellow emphasis added.]

Qatar ready to start new LNG plants in 2010 — Maktoob Business, Arabia

Qatar is targeting China and India for sales of the additional supplies, Qatargas Chief Executive Faisal al-Suwaidi told reporters at a news conference in Doha. [Bold red emphasis added.]

Webmaster’s Comments: As Qatar indicates — unlike what some LNG pundits have been claiming about surplus world LNG supplies — these extra LNG supplies do not "have to" go to the US.


9 Jan 2010

PM opens bridge between N.B., U.S. — CBC News

Harper stands firm on barring LNG ships

Prime Minister Stephen Harper did not rule out using regulations to block LNG tankers from Head Harbour Passage. [Red, yellow & bold emphasis added.]

Webmaster’s Comments: Downeast LNG's and Calais LNG's days are numbered.

Data disappoints PM — Telegraph-Journal, Saint John, NB

Harper acknowledged that there are occasionally issues upon which Canada and the U.S. disagree, including the Americans' plan to permit the passage of tankers carrying liquefied natural gas through Head Harbour Passage, the narrow body of water between Deer Island and Campobello in Passamaquoddy Bay.

"Our position is that these are sovereign Canadian waters and we oppose [LNG] tanker traffic through this passage, and we continue to make representations to the United States government at the highest levels," Harper said. "The government will examine all of its options; obviously, our preference is to work with our American friends and try to find a resolution to this issue." [Red, yellow & bold emphasis added.]

Webmaster’s Comments: Downeast LNG and Calais LNG merely need to move to industry-compliant terminal sites outside of Passamaquoddy Bay to solve this impasse and to give the projects some chance at success. Why won't they do it?

Importance of trade corridor recognized — Telegraph-Journal, Saint John, NB

[B]ut the nations have their differences. Canada will exert its authority to exclude liquefied natural gas tankers from Head Harbour Passage, Harper said in response to reporters' questions - in [U.S. Ambassador to Canada David Jacobson's] presence. [Red, yellow & bold emphasis added.]

Webmaster’s Comments: There is no question that Canada is steadfastly refusing to allow LNG transits into Passamaquoddy Bay.

Downeast LNG and Calais LNG need to get moving to different sites if they actually believe their projects are needed, since otherwise they have zero chance for success.

Part II: Asking Harper about proroguing: In New Brunswick, journos used just one of six questions on it [Blog] — David Adkins' On the Hill

…I am slightly heartened by reading the transcript of the Prime Minister facing several reporters in New Brunswick Friday afternoon who, as it turned out, did exactly what I and John did and chose to ask, by and large, about something other than prorogation.

The questions came from CBC, Radio-Canada, The Globe and Mail, the Saint John Telegraph-Journal and others. Here they are, in the order they were asked:

  1. Will Canada allow LNG (Liquid Natural Gas) tankers through Head Harbour Passage and Passamaquoddy Bay?
  2. There's a vacant position in the senate for New Brunswick. I'm wondering if you intend to appoint someone to the senate and if it's possible to have a name today?
  3. Prime minister - a question with respect to the meeting in Saint John a little later on. You stated in Montreal yesterday that nothing had changed in the federal government's action plan and why, therefore, have a pre-budgetary consultation when economists have stated that the recession is just about over?
  4. Mr. Harper, in response to today's numbers showing jobs are down, mr. Ignatieff has said there's a jobs crisis in canada. That's why he's holding hearings on the matter starting this month. Is there a jobs crisis? And are you missing an opportunity to deal with this because the House is prorogued?
  5. I'd like to know how you respond to growing public opinion against your decision to prorogue Parliament.
  6. On the LNG Issue, will the government consider passing a regulation to simply ban tankers from Head Harbour Passage?

[Red, yellow & bold emphasis added.]

Webmaster’s Comments: Opposing LNG in Passamaquoddy Bay is significantly on the minds of the Canadian news media and Canadian politicians.

Deep Panuke finally set to begin operations — Telegraph-Journal, Saint John, NB

[T]he Sable project, operated by ExxonMobil (NYSE:XOM), remains the dominant fixture of Nova Scotia's offshore sector. The $3-billion development, encompassing one of the largest known natural gas deposits remaining in North America, involves six major natural gas fields and represents the province's largest-ever construction project.

Smaller in scope, the Deep Panuke project, run by Calgary-based EnCana (TSX: ECA), will see natural gas drawn from the Scotian Shelf and transported via a subsea pipeline to Goldboro, N.S. From there, it will travel to market through the Maritimes and Northeast Pipeline. Repsol, the majority owner of Saint John's Canaport liquefied natural gas terminal, has already purchased all of the Deep Panuke gas.

MacLean said the project is expected to run between eight and 18 years, and is designed to handle 300 million cubic feet of gas per day - enough to heat 500,000 homes daily.

'Huge' gas resource found in Elgin [NB] — Times & Transcript, Moncton, NB

A massive natural gas deposit found in this area could equal the size of all of Canada's proven reserves, but whether it ever comes out of the ground remains to be seen.

[Corridor Resources] believes the amount of gas under the ground in the region is about 60 trillion cubic feet. By comparison, Canada is the western hemisphere's second-largest producer of natural gas, with proven reserves of 58 trillion cubic feet.

Webmaster’s Comments: It may be that Maine has undiscovered onshore shale gas deposits.

US wary of Yemeni gas tankers — The National, Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates

The US government is considering tighter security checks on liquefied natural gas (LNG) tankers arriving at American ports from Yemen, after the mayor of Boston raised concerns that they could be used by militants.

“Until we have sufficient information and opportunity to enhance security measures, we don’t intend to support the scheduled arrival of Yemen-originating tankers,” [Boston's director of emergency preparedness] Mr McGough added.

Boston is particularly concerned about risks associated with LNG tankers because cargoes travel close to its residential areas on their way to a gas-receiving terminal, which was built in 1972, on the city’s outskirts.

[Yemen’s] internal security situation has deteriorated sharply in recent months, with rebels from the disaffected Houthi tribe in northern Yemen and secessionists in the south vying to topple the government. [Red emphasis added.]

Canadian energy may head to Asia in 2010 — Times & Transcript, Moncton, NB

"Asia appears to be the growing market, not the United States," said Ralph Glass, vice-president of operations with AJM Petroleum Consultants in Calgary.

The United States would likely use gas from its own enormous resource plays, like the Haynesville in Louisiana and the Barnett in Texas, before it sought out gas from the Horn River Basin and Montney plays in British Columbia, Glass said. [Red & yellow emphasis added.]


8 Jan 2010

Roosevelt Campobello International Park Commission intervenes in opposition of Calais LNG terminal — LNG Law Blog, Washington, DC

This week the Roosevelt Campobello International Park Commission moved to intervene in the Calais LNG FERC proceeding. In its filing, the Commission expressed opposition to the Calais LNG project and any other project that would permit LNG vessels to transit the Head Harbour Passage. [Red & yellow emphasis added.]

Webmaster’s Comments: The RCIP Commission is fulfilling its US-Canada treaty obligation to protect the Roosevelt Campobello International Park.

Even the US Government requires opposing Calais LNG and Downeast LNG.

New Mayor pledges new hope — O Jornal, Fall River, MA

"I will fight to ensure our public safety is never compromised, increase levels of staffing in police and fire departments, when it comes to public safety, I will stand side by side with citizens to make sure an LNG terminal is never located within our city borders," he said in his first address as mayor.

He said that he wants to fund commuter rail through a national transportation bill and he is working on a plan that is "going to put a stake through the heart of that LNG plan. [Red, yellow & bold emphasis added.]

Boston Mayor to pursue legal ban of Yemen LNG imports — Euromoney Institutional Investor (EII), New York, NY

Menino is now in talks with stakeholders to review safety procedures. Local officials haven’t ruled out the possibility that tankers from Yemen could unload at an offshore terminal in the outer harbor, such as GDF Suez’s Neptune or Excelerate’s Northeast Gateway.

Webmaster’s Comments: Offshore LNG terminals and ship transits are safely away from the public — unlike Downeast LNG and Calais LNG.

Proposals for natural gas, oil exports to Asia set to move ahead in 2010 (LNG-Demand) — Oilweek, Calgary, AB

CALGARY — Two proposals to export Canadian energy to Asian markets are set to take major steps forward in 2010…. [Red emphasis added.]

LNG companies targeted in bill — Daily Journal of Commerce, Portland, OR

The Domestic Resource Protection Act (HB 3616) comes in response to three LNG terminals proposed for construction in Oregon, including Bradwood Landing, Oregon LNG and Jordan Cove. Riley claims that the companies pushing for these projects have [not] yet proven that the Northwest is in need of foreign natural gas.

Along with an assessment proving need, the act will require applicants to pay for all costs associated with the review of project permits or the authorization of an application, something Riley says could save Oregon tax payers $90,000. [Red & yellow emphasis added.]


7 Jan 2010

New Brunswick shale gas play draws attention — Oil & Gas Journal, Houston, TX

PetroWorth Resources Inc., Calgary, divested all interests in Alberta natural gas wells to concentrate activity in eastern Canada.

The decision is based on recent shale gas developments adjacent to PetroWorth’s 41,000-acre Rosevale block in New Brunswick.

CEC report: Domestic shale gas may displace LNG in California's energy supply mix — LNG Law Blog, Washington, DC

The California Energy Commission's 2009 Integrated Energy Policy Report speculates that natural gas from domestic shale gas plays may displace LNG from California’s future energy supply mix. The report goes on to note that "if private investors are willing to invest in [LNG] facilities without committing taxpayer funds, however, [LNG] should be considered a viable option."


6 Jan 2010

Calais LNG files papers for terminal — Bangor Daily News, Bangor, ME

“We have found nothing that would prevent us from moving forward,” [Calais LNG development director Art Gelber] said.

Webmaster’s Comments: The sovereign Government of Canada isn't something that will prevent the project? Hubris and recklessness reigns at Calais LNG.

State unveils offshore management plan (Jan 4) — Cape Cod Times, Hyannis, MA

“I'm very proud,” state Secretary of Energy and Environmental Affairs Ian Bowles, said today. “I think if you look at the statements from the Obama administration about their intent to develop a federal ocean plan, they are all looking at the Massachusetts management plan as a model for that.”

Plan B, if the Big Line fails [Opinion column] — Alaska Dispatch, Anchorage, AK

Because AEA's proposal reduces the demand, and thus, the economies of scale associated with either the bullet line or the Valdez LNG projects, it makes each -- and the projects they would serve -- less economic. This decreases the likelihood that those projects will be built and Alaska's North Slope gas developed. In short, if Alaska does not use its own gas in a Plan B world, it is less likely others will as well.

NorthernStar says construction of Bradwood LNG terminal to begin this year — The Daily News, Longview, WA

Should federal regulators determine the project meets the requirements of the Endangered Species Act, NorthernStar will still have to get approvals from Washington and Oregon under the clean air, clean water and Coastal Zone Management acts. FERC's decision to approve the project also faces an appeal from various environmental groups and state and federal agencies in the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals.

Webmaster’s Comments: An unlikely prospect.

Bradwood LNG crosses a milestone — The Daily Astorian, Astoria, OR

But the two federal agencies leading the review apparently disagree on whether the company has submitted all the necessary information and on how quickly the assessment should be completed.

The National Marine Fisheries Service has agreed to move forward with the project's Endangered Species Act consultation - a key milestone in the federal LNG approval process - even though it doesn't have all the information requested.

…Cathy Tortorici, division chief for National Marine Fisheries Service, says her agency isn't required to meet the March 8 deadline and will probably take more than the typical 135 days to complete the consultation because the project is so complex.

Proposal protects turtle's sea habitat — The World, Coos Bay, OR

Harm to critical habitat must be considered when federal agencies authorize or fund such things as stormwater runoff contaminated by industrial and agricultural pollution, oil spills, power plants, aquaculture facilities, desalination plants, wind and wave energy projects, and liquefied natural gas ports, [NOAA Fisheries Service sea turtle ecologist Sara McNulty] said.

US LNG sendout hits over 2-yr highs as cold holds — Reuters UK

Terminals across the East and Gulf Coasts, some of which have barely taken a cargo in recent weeks, are now seeing some action. The Cove Point terminal in Maryland, which has imported about two cargoes a month since October, received two cargoes this week alone.

Analysts expect this to be the beginning of a near doubling of LNG imports to the United States in 2010 -- to an average 2.3 bcf per day -- as new global production comes online and demand in the traditionally large importers in the far east remains dampened by economic woes.

Webmaster’s Comments: There are two issues to consider: (1) Analysts were wrong predicting 2009 would be a banner LNG import year, and (2) Even if LNG imports double, that will bring LNG terminal activity to only around 16% of capacity.

Economy-Mexico: Higher taxes and price hikes to hurt middle class — RBC Wealth Management, Canada

The government of conservative Mexican President Felipe Caldercn decided to raise the retail prices of fuels, electricity and liquefied natural gas, used mainly in homes for cooking and heating water, in order to boost depleted public revenues.


5 Dec 2010

Downeast LNG drags out FERC process; public denied equal treatment (Jan 4) — LNGsafety Yahoo Group

Downeast LNG still has not fully complied with answering FERC's last Draft Environmental Impact Statement (DEIS) data request that was due on 2009 July 6. Downeast LNG is now nearly 6 months past the deadline.

When Save Passamaquoddy Bay 3-Nation Alliance requested extending the deadline by 90 days beyond July 6, Downeast LNG objected, and FERC did not respond, essentially denying the request; however, and with apparent impunity, Downeast LNG keeps delaying compliance with FERC's requirements.

The public has not been treated equally by FERC, while the applicant continues to abuse the FERC deadline. By doing so, FERC further degrades its credibility with the US public. [Red, yellow & bold emphasis added.]

Quarry battle won, LNG fight continues — Telegraph-Journal, Saint John, NB

"The bottom line is that the government of Canada is going to stick with not letting tankers through Head Harbour Passage," Craig insisted. [Red & yellow emphasis added.]

Webmaster’s Comments: The US claim of LNG carrier innocent passage under the UN Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS) — even if the US were a party to that treaty — is superceded by the US Congressional.

Congress requires the US Coast Guard to vet Canadian waters for LNG transits to US ports in Passamaquoddy Bay. The Coast Guard is required to either deny or allow LNG transits in those waters.

Since sovereigns are equal, since the US claims the right to deny transits in Canadian waters — and especially since the US has exercised that judgement on Canadian waters — then Canada clearly has that same right. Innocent passage of LNG carriers does not apply in Head Harbour Passage or the rest of Passamaquoddy Bay.

Yemen isn’t the real problem with gas shipments via Harbor [Editorial] — The Boston Globe, Boston, MA

The facility was built 40 years ago, long before a terrorist associated with Al Qaeda tried to blow up a Northwest Airlines jet bound for Detroit. Yet bringing LNG tankers through Boston Harbor was always a poor idea. As an engine failure aboard a tanker off Cape Cod two years ago demonstrated, enough mishaps and natural disasters can occur to make Everett an unwise destination for the ships, even without the extra risk of terrorist sabotage. What’s needed is a new Distrigas facility in a more sparsely populated part of New England.

… After the 9/11 attacks, US officials temporarily closed Boston Harbor to the shipments until they could put adequate security measures in place. Those attacks should also have prompted government and industry officials to begin seeking an alternative to Everett. After more than eight years, such an effort is long overdue. [Red, yellow & bold emphasis added.]

Energy regulators up timeline for liquid gas terminal (Jan 4) — The Oregonian, Portland, OR

The Federal Energy Regulatory Commission has twice asked the fisheries agency to move forward with their biological consultation on the project -- once in 2007 and again in June 2009. Both times, NMFS replied that it didn't have adequate information to do the job, and requested substantially more data from NorthernStar.

Just two months ago, NMFS sent a 35-page, single-spaced letter to FERC laying out in voluminous detail what it would need to undertake its consultation.

The state of Oregon has sued FERC for jumping the gun by issuing a federal license for the project before state permitting processes were complete, and NMFS has joined that fight in support of Oregon.

Webmaster’s Comments: FERC made a similar "rush-to-judgment" demand of the Sector Northern New England US Coast Guard Captain of the Port regarding the LNG projects in Passamaquoddy Bay. The Coast Guard did not look kindly at FERC's inappropriate demand, and refused to compromise the integrity of its process by cutting it short. FERC continues to betray the public interest with its demand on the National Marine Fisheries Service re the Bradwood Landing LNG project.

US aims to boost production of natural gas and Brazil of sugarcane to meet their energy needs — ICIS, Sutton, Surrey, UK

The US likely has around 100 years of natural gas reserves as a result of recent shale gas discoveries and advanced extraction methods, according to ANGA, the members of which represent over 40% of US natural gas supply.

"We are confident that we now have a 100-year supply of natural gas that continues to grow for domestic use, based on over 20 [trillion cubic feet - 566bn m3] used annually today," says David Trice, chairman of ANGA and non-executive chairman of US oil and gas firm Newfield Exploration, in an interview with ICIS.

"Through most of my career, it never got beyond an eight-year supply. This sea change in natural gas has only occurred over the last three years...." [Red, yellow & bold emphasis added.]

Webmaster’s Comments: The US is drowning in natural gas.


4 Jan 2010

Budget is focus of new session for Legislature — Bangor Daily News, Bangor, ME

Lawmakers also will consider competing recommendations for how the state should regulate the “energy corridors” that could one day be built alongside Interstate 95 or on other rights of way.

But the group deadlocked over whether to extend a moratorium on such projects in response to Canadian officials’ opposition to LNG tankers in Passamaquoddy Bay. Supporters of the LNG projects want to use the moratorium as a bargaining chip because the energy corridors primarily would benefit Canadian companies.

Webmaster’s Comments: Supporters of the LNG projects are, in essence, advocating that Maine receive no benefits from the NB-ME Energy Corridor, such as lease payments, taxes, and lower energy rates — since they know Canada will not allow LNG transits into Passamaquoddy Bay.

Besides, if they really thought the LNG projects are needed, all they need to do is move them south of West Quoddy Head, and there would be no objections from Canada. So why won't they do that?

The LNG developers know their projects are moot; therefore, even moving them to industry-compliant locations outside Passamaquoddy Bay will still not result in their success. The projects are surplus late-comers, with no future.

Brewer eyed for methane fuel [LNG] plant — Bangor Daily News, Bangor, ME

“We’re intending to tap into the nearby Maritimes & Northeast Pipeline that travels through Brewer,” he said, and basically “we’ll be taking some of the natural gas and liquefying it, purifying it and distributing it via truck to customers [in the region] who, until now, have not had access to liquefied gas.”

At first, Maine Liquid Methane Fuels will supply only large energy users, such as paper mills, seeking to reduce energy costs, Cook said. [Red emphasis added.]

Webmaster’s Comments: Lincoln Paper could also tap into the Maritimes & Northeast Pipeline that runs only 30-some miles south of the mill. Verso Paper in Bucksport already has its own natural gas pipeline coming from Maritimes & Northeast Pipeline.

Will Flanagan sworn in as Fall River's 39th mayor — The Herald News, Fall River, MA

[S]upport has already come from U.S. Rep. Barney Frank, D-Mass., who addressed the crowd prior to Flanagan’s inaugural address.

Frank, touting a relationship already being built by the two, committed to making Flanagan’s job a little easier by working to bring commuter rail to the city and eliminating the threat of an LNG terminal. Frank also promised to work to bring financial relief to the cities and towns in his district and said he was looking forward to a promising future for Fall River under Flanagan. [Red emphasis added.]

OUR VIEW: United fight against LNG [Editorial] — The Herald News, Fall River, MA

Thumbs up to local, state and federal officials who are putting their heads together to come up with a viable plan to fight liquified natural gas going forward.

Mayor-elect Will Flanagan, U.S. Rep. James McGovern, Rhode Island Attorney General Patrick Lynch, state Rep. David Sullivan and Somerset Selectman Lorne Lawless met Wednesday to strategize a game plan to fight Hess LNG and Weaver’s Cove. “We don’t want there to be a public perception that this is becoming a dormant issue,” Flanagan said. “We left with the idea that all would play a part in sending a message” to Weaver’s Cove.

The officials will fight LNG on the state and federal level, launching their attacks within the next 60 to 90 days. They will work with Gov. Deval Patrick and Ian Bowles, secretary of the Office of Energy and Environmental Affairs, to gain their support to stymie Weaver’s Cove’s efforts. They also plan to meet with U.S. Department of Energy Secretary Steven Chu to voice their opposition to locating an LNG unloading station and stoarage tank so close to densly populated areas. Not only could it put residents in danger, it would most likely prohibit the waterfront development so critical to Fall River’s economic future. [Red & yellow emphasis added.]

Court ruling imperils Baltimore LNG proposal — The New York Times, New York, NY

A federal appeals court has upheld Maryland's decision to deny a water quality certification for a liquefied natural gas terminal at Baltimore's Sparrows Point.

[T]he court panel ruled (pdf) that Maryland regulators decided within one year of the Army Corps of Engineers' provision of necessary information -- not when AES had submitted its application.

Further, the opinion holds that Maryland properly considered how water flow would be affected by the additional dredging needed for LNG tankers. The court agreed with the state that the dredging would induce "pollutants" by creating deep channels where the dissolved oxygen levels would not meet water standards.

The ruling could have an effect on other proposed LNG facilities, especially those in Oregon where the state is still reviewing required permits and similar environmental concerns have been raised. [Red & yellow emphasis added.]

FERC issues certificate for on-shore pipeline to support LNG port off Florida (Jan issue) — Pipeline & Gas Journal, Houston, TX

The Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) issued a certificate of public convenience and necessity to Port Dolphin Energy LLC to build and operate an onshore pipeline to connect to its deepwater LNG port planned off the west coast of Florida [28 miles off Tampa Bay]. The order marks another milestone in the project. Last month, the U.S. Maritime Administration and U.S. Coast Guard approved the project. This action followed approval in September by Gov. Charlie Crist.

Global LNG market to impact US natural gas market — ICIS, Sutton, Surrey, UK

[O]ver the past few years, the US natural gas supply picture has radically reversed as new drilling technology in tight-rock shale formations has unleashed a flood of supply, leading to this year's unprecedented storage builds.

"We had expected to see the LNG wave of 2009, but that didn't occur," says Teri Viswanath, director of energy research for Credit Suisse in Houston, Texas, US.

There are currently nine US terminals in operation on the US Gulf Coast and Eastern seaboard, according to the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC).

Four terminals, including the 2bcf/day Qatar Petroleum, ExxonMobil and ConocoPhillips-owned Golden Pass terminal in Sabine, Texas, US, are under construction and have been rumored to open in 2010.

In addition, there are 14 other US LNG projects green-lighted by FERC that have not started construction….

The proliferation of LNG construction flies in the face of the hulking stockpiles in the US, but follows industry sentiment that the global LNG market will start to rebalance in the next few years with a need for new liquefaction terminals.

"It is probably a mistake to say there is a demand for LNG in the US," Ineson said. "But there is a market for it." [Red, yellow & bold emphasis added.]

Webmaster’s Comments: The reality is, LNG imported to the US is now being re-exported overseas; plus new LNG export projects are in the works. The LNG industry keeps compounding error upon error.

The gas glut reaches Qatar — Petroleum Economist, London, England, UK

THE WORLD's largest liquefied natural gas (LNG) exporter says it will not pursue any greenfield projects for another four years, indicating that the global glut of natural gas is affecting the upstream investment strategies of even the most ambitious producers. [Red, yellow & bold emphasis added.]

Russia: Shtokman plans hit the buffers (Jan issue) — Petroleum Economist, London, England, UK

GAS IS IN oversupply, prices are low, demand has slumped and the situation could persist for years, say analysts. So with its finances still shaky, Russia's Gazprom and its partners in the pricey Shtokman gasfield development have delayed their flagship project.

Ominously, he added that "projects on a scale such as Shtokman are coming up against difficulties in attracting finance". [Red, yellow & bold emphasis added.]


3 Jan 2010

Mayor seeks to block tankers (Jan 1) — The Boston Globe, Boston, MA

Mayor Thomas M. Menino said yesterday he will ask Boston’s lawyers to see whether the city can block Yemeni tankers from delivering liquefied natural gas into Boston Harbor, calling such deliveries “wrong.”

House Speaker Robert A. DeLeo, who had called the plan to bring in the tankers “a matter of grave concern,’’ said yesterday he would contact the state’s top public safety official - Kevin M. Burke, the secretary of the Executive Office of Public Safety - to look for ways to halt the deliveries.

Officials for DistriGas, the company responsible for the shipments, have taken issue with some of those assertions about risk. A 2004 study commissioned by the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission was based on dangerously flawed assumptions, and its recommendations were “scientifically unsupported and premature,’’ Francis J. Katulak, DistriGas’s senior vice president for operations, told the federal agency at the time. Thus, he said, it was impossible to know the real hazards of a potential liquefied natural gas release from a tanker. [Red, yellow & bold emphasis added.]

Webmaster’s Comments: Even Distrigas believes FERC does not realistically determine actual threats to civilians and the industry.

Our view: Reason for optimism [Editorial] — The Herald News, Fall River, MA

Fortunately, Flanagan has … been meeting frequently with department heads and the Correia administration to get up to speed on ongoing projects and design a plan for the immediate future so he can hit the ground running after Monday’s inauguration. He has also caucused with state and federal officials to craft a strategy for fighting LNG going forward. [Red emphasis added.]

Mackenzie Pipeline saga to drag on despite Joint Review Panel approval (Dec 31) — (The Canadian Press)

It's unclear whether Arctic gas can compete with other supplies that are further along in development and closer to market.

For instance, technological advances have allowed producers to cut the cost of pumping huge amounts of natural gas from what were once tough-to-access shale formations in Canada and the United States. [Red & yellow emphasis added.]

State board rejects LNG foes' challenge (Jan 1) — The Daily Astorian, Astoria, OR

The Oregon Land Use Board of Appeals has rejected a challenge filed by Bradwood Landing LNG opponents, clearing the way for the board to rule on the two land-use issues that were remanded back to the county.

Now that the appeal has been rejected, LUBA can move on to deciding whether the county properly addressed two flaws in the original approval of Bradwood Landing's land-use application.

The county board of commissioners originally approved NorthernStar's land-use application in March 2008. Project opponents appealed the decision to LUBA, which rejected most of the appellants' points but directed the county to revisit two flaws: the county's designation of the project as small- to medium-scale, and the definition of "protect" as it relates to fish and their habitat.


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