DeFazio, Wu and Hooley Disappointed in LNG Licensing Process
WASHINGTON, D.C. — Representatives Peter DeFazio, David Wu, and Darlene Hooley wrote to the chairman of the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC), Joseph Kelliher, yesterday to request additional time to address ongoing concerns about the liquefied natural gas (LNG) licensing process.
FERC issued its Final Environmental Impact Statement (FEIS) for the Bradwood Landing LNG project earlier this month. However, many of the community’s concerns, including those raised in the Oregon Department of Energy (ODOE) report and by the recent changes to the Bradwood Landing facility proposal, have not yet been adequately addressed.
"With the potential environmental and safety risks reported in the Final Environmental Impact Statement for the Bradwood Landing LNG facility, it is clear the State of Oregon needs more time to asses the plans before the licensing process goes forward," DeFazio said. "It is my sincere hope that FERC will step up to the plate and protect Oregonians as this project goes forward."
"Once again, FERC has unilaterally moved forward in the LNG licensing process, ignoring repeated requests from both the governor and congressional delegation for meaningful community input," said Wu. "The FEIS is incomplete without sections addressing the latest research and proposal changes, and the entire licensing process is inadequate without the opportunity for the community to have its concerns resolved."
"It doesn’t seem to me to be too much to ask, given the enormity of the undertaking to establish an LNG terminal, that the people who will actually live with the terminal in their backyard be given sufficient time to review the environmental impact statement having to do with the development," said Hooley.
Text of the letter sent to FERC follows.
June 12, 2008
Joseph T. Kelliher, Chairman
Federal Energy Regulatory Commission
888 First Street NE
Washington, DC 20426
Dear Chairman Kelliher:
We write to you today in response to the Final Environmental Impact Statement (FEIS) for the Bradwood Landing liquefied natural gas (LNG) project released by your commission on June 6, 2008. We remain concerned about the FERC licensing process.
On May 13, 2008, FERC received a letter in support of Governor Kulongoski's request for a supplemental draft environmental impact statement to address both an Oregon Department of Energy (ODOE) report on LNG dated May 7, 2008 and changes in the proposal for the Bradwood Landing facility. These changes include the lack of screened water intakes on LNG tankers, changes in proposed pipeline routes and the deposit locations of dredge materials, and the possibility of open regasification, which will lead to increased discharge of water into the Columbia. These are substantial changes and their possible effects on the environment and the surrounding communities must be considered.
We do appreciate that FERC saw fit to request that the developer submit within 30 days either a plan for retrofitting LNG tankers or an alternative plan for screening ballast water. However, this and other important environmental risks remain inadequately addressed by this FEIS.
For these reasons, we respectfully request that you provide additional time for the public and other stakeholders to make comment and petition FERC on issues either raised or overlooked by the FEIS. We firmly believe that any Environmental Impact Statement that does not take into account the ODOE's report or the changes to the Bradwood Landing proposal can not adequately address the true effects of the proposed facility or the needs of the environment and Oregon communities.
We look forward to working with you on this issue to ensure that these major concerns are fully addressed by FERC. Thank you in advance for your cooperation on this matter of great concern to the state of Oregon.
Sincerely,David Wu Peter DeFazio Darlene HooleyMembers of Congress