"For much of the state of Maine, the environment is the economy"
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30 November 2006
Although FERC is an agency within the Department of Energy (DOE), when FERC misbehaves, the only apparent recourse is the courts and Congressional legislation, said Godfrey, and, although it is FERC’s responsibility to be honest and truthful with the public, and to present information in ways that are not deceptive or misleading, FERC has not been abiding by that responsibility.
Godfrey said, “The result has been damage to the credibility of FERC, the FERC permitting process, the DOE, American energy infrastructure, and the US Government. It has generated mistrust among the public, and rightly so.”
SPB is suggesting that it is time for Congress to hold hearings regarding FERC’s violation of the public trust, and to put into place a FERC Commission that includes proactive interests of public safety. “The American public has the right to demand that FERC be held accountable for its misbehavior, and to insist that Congress set right an agency that has gone wrong.” [Bold red emphasis added.] (Nov 28)
"We should not be the ones penalized simply because BIA has done one thing and when questioned says another, while allowing Passamaquoddy interests to be exploited. At best the BIA is in an awkward position, but if it intends to further challenge Passamaquoddy rights, we are confident about our responsibility to take care of our land." [Bold red emphasis added.] (Nov 24)
Over 12,000 flyers entitled "LNG No way in our bay!" went into Charlotte County mailboxes recently, compliments of Save Passamaquoddy Bay/Canada. The citizens group formed to oppose three liquefied natural gas (LNG) terminals proposed for the Maine shore of Passamaquoddy Bay wants to inform all residents of Charlotte County of the issues associated with such development and urge them to support the campaign. (Nov 24)
WEBMASTER'S COMMENTS: We've been told by Maine government that the DEP "doesn't attend pre-application meetings," even though they sent a representative to Washington County when Quoddy Bay LLC gave a presentation at Sipayik about their project, over a year ago. At the latest meeting, the DEP enabled an LNG developer to represent the Maine DEP to the public, without anyone from state government present to detect and correct any inappropriate statements.
If the DEP doesn't believe it's necessary to be present at meetings intended to inform the public of the public's role in the state process, then the DEP should find a different, more responsible way to convey that information. For instance, a paid display ad containing how the public can comment to the state would fulfill the need, without giving developers the opportunity to corrupt the process, would provide the information to more local residents than holding such meetings, and would avoid state sponsoring of a pro-developer public relations event.
This award was given in recognition of their dedication and commitment to organizing Ntulankeyutmonen Nkihtaqmikon (We Take Care of the Homeland) and as eloquent proponents for environmental justice and the rights of local communities, including indigenous people, to full access to democratic processes in order to manage and protect their resources and environments. (Nov 24)
WEBMASTER'S COMMENTS: David Bridges and Vera Francis are leaders in the effort to prevent LNG development in Passamaquoddy Bay.
27 November 2006
"The area where the LNG’s are [proposed to go]," the e-mails stated, "was proposed 25 years ago as a site for an oil refinery. [The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration] opposed and defeated it because of the effect on threatened and sensitive species."
WEBMASTER'S COMMENTS: Regardless of the Judge's decisions in these lawsuits, the Quoddy Bay LNG project is stymied by an orbit of circular logic of Quoddy Bay's own making, legally preventing FERC from accepting their project application.
WEBMASTER'S COMMENTS: This project provides a perfect opportunity for Excelerate Energy's proposed Energy Bridge offshore LNG terminals to load their regasification LNG vessels, such as at their Northeast Gateway project off the coast of Massachusetts. In fact, this procedure is similar to Excelerate Energy's LNG Transshipment plans, as explained on their website. It would shorten the specialized regas vessels' trips to pick up LNG, and would free up conventional LNG carriers for long-distance hauling. Using this technique, smaller LNG vessels would not be needed.
WASHINGTON New England lawmakers say the Democratic takeover of Congress should strengthen their hand as they press federal regulators to come up with a regional approach to siting liquefied natural gas terminals.
Because key Democrats from New England will be assuming more powerful roles in the new Congress, advocates for a regional LNG strategy expect to have more leverage in persuading federal officials to scrap the current project-by-project review of proposed facilities and start looking at the proposals from a broader perspective before giving approval.
The congressmen contend too many LNG proposals are in the approval pipeline while environmental and safety concerns take a back seat, and that not all of the projects are needed to meet the region’s growing energy needs. [Bold red emphasis added.]
"According to Fall River, they have not used (the $25,000) yet and, as of right now, it is not a necessity to fight LNG," Turner said. He added that, by taking the money originally appropriated from Fall River, the town will only be spending $5,000 for a $30,000 project. "We are looking for $5,000 more and we can apply it to an integral part of our appeal. ... "No pipeline, no LNG." (Nov 26)
What really raised eyebrows last week was the assertion of Mary Jeanne Stone, chairwoman of the Advisory and Finance Committee, that Fall River officials have indicated that they do not need the $25,000 from Somerset.
SAKONNET AREA A bid to dredge Mount Hope Bay for LNG tankers is so insulting and incomplete that the Rhode Island Department of Environmental Management should cease its review of the plan. So said Rhode Island Attorney General Patrick Lynch at a Tuesday night DEM hearing in Tiverton High School, one of two scheduled here on the dredging plan. (Nov 20)
Nothing in human affairs is utterly without any risk but Mr. Clarke's well-compensated fear-mongering, without any balancing facts, ill serves the region. Meanwhile, in Europe and Asia, LNG shipments continue to go into some of the world's biggest ports. (Nov 26)
WEBMASTER'S COMMENTS: The editors of the Providence Journal are apparently unaware that the LNG-industry itself via LNG world-class SIGTTO safe practices standards indicates why the Everett LNG terminal location is inappropriate from a safety standpoint. The Providence Journal's editorial is, in itself, dangerous in its dismissal of LNG-industry safe-practices standards, developed over decades of experience.
"The idea that our very way of life as Americans is dependant on oil from Iraq, Iran, Saudi Arabia, Russia, Venezuela, Nigeria is a profound mistake," said Drew, "I don't believe that our current administration has motivation to change that." (Nov 24)
Special Master Ralph I. Lancaster Jr., of the firm Pierce Atwood in Portland, Maine, has mediated the case since his January appointment and will ultimately submit a recommendation to the high court. [Bold emphasis added.]
WEBMASTER'S COMMENTS: FERC again shows its hand as a biased agency that favors industry over states and citizens.
If "Pierce Atwood" rings a bell, it's because Pierce Atwood churns out news releases on behalf of Downeast LNG. Does anyone wonder about FERC objectivity and propriety, with Pierce Atwood attorney Ralph Lancaster Jr. being FERC's Special Master in this case, when Pierce Atwood has a financial interest in furthering LNG projects?
"Florida will not have LNG in its waters, or on its shores, so why should we? All of the same risks that stop Florida from housing LNG in its territories are the same for us here in The Bahamas. We need to preserve our environs for our children, not look at risky ventures that could de-stabilize our main economies like Tourism and Fishing for another country's gain!" says Duncombe.
The Bradwood Landing report left out the impact of LNG ships on the Columbia River and in the Pacific Ocean and key details are missing from its mitigation plans, according to the filing, the result of a phone conversation among multiple agencies' officials and the company's contracted engineer. Because of the company's outstanding data issues, FERC project manager Paul Friedman said his agency, which will ultimately approve or deny the terminal siting request, has not set a project review schedule for other officials to follow. (Nov 24)
Local opponents of the proposed liquefied natural gas facility for the coast of Malibu/Oxnard were cautiously jubilant last week as the Ventura County Air Pollution Control Board voted to oppose a permit being considered by the federal Environmental Protection Agency that would allow construction and operation of the BHP Billiton LNG processing terminal 14 miles off the coast. (Nov 22)
GOODOOGA (NSW) Michael Anderson, leader of the Euahlayi Nation and spokesperson for the Gumilaroi Nation, has accused Australian governments of “not having the intestinal fortitude to stand against the multi-nationals who seek to destroy Aboriginal culture.”
“For the sake of profit they are destroying our iconic symbols that are older than the Pyramids of Egypt, older than the fabled city of Atlanta and whose religious and spiritual existence are thousands of years older than Christianity.”
WEBMASTER'S COMMENTS: The LNG industry is harming aboriginal peoples and their culture worldwide: North America, South America, Africa, Russia, Australia, and possibly elsewhere.
The short version of its decision is that FERC will continue to enforce the quality standards specified in the tariffs filed by pipeline companies, rather than setting federal standards. Each tariff is different, with quality standards for natural gas based on the specification ranges a pipeline company imposes to protect its pipeline.
FERC's role in all this is to verify that the tariff includes gas quality specifications and to enforce those specifications that are in the tariff. The natural gas industry welcomed the policy ruling because it does not mandate an interchangeability standard, instead leaving the development of natural gas quality standards to an industry group called the Natural Gas Council Plus (NGC+).
WEBMASTER'S COMMENTS: Some members of the US LNG industry want to import hotter LNG, so that the regasification terminals can extract the more valuable "heavy" hydrocarbons, and sell them separately. Since it is the gas industry not FERC that is establishing the "hotness" standard for imported LNG, it is easy to conclude that hotter and more explosive LNG (as demonstrated by US Coast Guard tests in 1978) will likely be imported in the future.
Gazprom, Russia's state-owned natural gas producer, is proving far less rich in resources than it has claimed. This is significant as Russia has used Gazprom as a political arm, to punish the US and reward neighbors based on policy.
WEBMASTER'S COMMENTS: Meanwhile, the US State Department has invited Russia to own US energy infrastructure, and Russia has expressed interest in owning US LNG import facilities! Not only is there a lack of an intelligent energy policy, but the right hand is ignorant of what the left hand is doing!
25 November 2006
ST. ANDREWS Save Passamaquoddy Bay/Canada have distributed pamphlets to every home in Charlotte County explaining why they are opposed to LNG (liquefied natural gas) and asking residents to help them in their fight. (Nov 21)
The words have been said, they're on record, let's get them on paper. Let's make the LNG paperwork include fighting the Canadian government position as well. Not only might it delay the entire process, there's the chance that some LNG companies will either give up or not have the funding to take the fight through each successive stage. (Nov 24)
WEBMASTER'S COMMENTS: Girdis continues to ignore that the Downeast LNG terminal would violate LNG-industry world-class safety standards (as specified by SIGTTO), and that his project is not protected under the UN Law of the Sea Convention's "innocent passage" provision, since the US is not a party to that treaty. His project also would violate Maine environmental law.
Girdis also ignores that his project is not needed, due to according to the LNG industry the proposed and FERC-permitted 400% over-capacity Northeast LNG infrastructure.
Girdis, himself, has told the public that his project has a 70% chance of failure, that it may never obtain an LNG supply, and it may never find a customer. (See article below, "LNG terminals without dedicated supply unlikely to get built in US, analysts say")
Girdis's project is built entirely on "smoke and mirrors," simply to provide Girdis and Wyatt with a large paycheck until their investors pull the plug.
"It's beginning to dawn on people that having a regasification terminal isn't a guarantee that LNG will arrive," Andy Flower, an independent LNG and natural gas consultant said. "I don't think the ones under construction will be filled by 2015. There's not enough LNG to go around."
Flower said US LNG importers not only miscalculated the complexity and amount of time it takes for liquefaction plants to be built, they also underestimated demand from other countries for the gas. "The US doesn't look very far outside its borders," he said.
"Trinidad just doesn't have the gas reserves and in Egypt they are probably there, but it takes time and costs money." [Bold red emphasis added.] (Nov 3)
WEBMASTER'S COMMENTS: This provides even more evidence that Downeast LNG and Quoddy Bay LNG are unrealistic projects.
20 November 2006
Woodcock wrote in his 38-page opinion that a group of private citizens who are reservation residents do not have standing to bring the lawsuit because they are not the tribe and because none of them owns the Split Rock land where the proposed LNG terminal might be built. (Nov 18)
WEBMASTER'S COMMENTS: When can Americans be deprived of their rights regarding ownership interest in their lands? When they're American Indians, according to the court.
When is a lease not a lease? When the Court says so.
Judge Woodcock's judgment calls the agreement between Quoddy Bay LLC and Pleasant Point Tribal Government a "Conditional Lease." Thus, according to the court, Quoddy Bay doesn't yet have a valid lease. Since FERC requires a lease or deed to the land to be used for their LNG project before FERC can accept an application, Quoddy Bay can't begin the formal LNG permitting process. FERC's conducting those required studies could result in FERC violating the law (since those studies might fail the project, resulting in the applicant not actually having a lease in the first place).
Quoddy Bay is caught in a Catch-22 of their own making!
Capt. Peacock, for one, disputes there is widespread opposition, even in tranquil St. Andrews. "The only opposition there is from rich Americans who bought homes there," he says. (Nov 18)
WEBMASTER'S COMMENTS: The National Post article falls flat on its face:
- The story fails to disclose that Capt. Peacock could reap hundreds of thousands of dollars per year in LNG tanker pilotage fees.
- The waterway suitability issue involves more than just the ability to safely bring in an LNG carrier via computer simulation. The Passamaquoddy Bay LNG projects would violate several Society of International Gas Tanker and Terminal Operators (SIGTTO) best-practices standards, including:
- A long and winding channel with several navigational hazards;
- Fast currents and great tides, including a significant whirlpool;
- LNG piers close to the navigable waterway;
- Waterway with pre-existing incompatible uses (fishing, pleasure boating, sailing, whalewatching, etc.);
- Navigable fairway and terminals too close to civilians and civilian assets, to whom escaped LNG vapor could do harm;
- The several navigational issues magnify probability and results of human error, and
- A greater-than-zero probability of a large LNG release, due to the aforementioned problems.
- A "leaky" international border. This border in Quoddy (the Passamaquoddy Bay area) is historically significant as a smuggling center an activity that continues, even today. Border security is problematic.
- Canada does not require LNG vessel inspection or armed LNG-vessel escort. Since LNG vessels would not enter US waters until nearly at downtown Eastport, vessel inspection, security, and potential impact on US civilians and civilian assets as well as on Coast Guard personnel and assets that are located there are an issue.
- The US is not a party to the UN Law of the Sea Convention, and Congress has rejected joining the treaty on numerous occasions, stating that it isn't in the US's best interests. Since treaties require agreement between the affected countries, the US has no "innocent passage" rights under the UN Law of the Sea Convention.
- Around 75% of the Quoddy population is Canadian, and -- contrary to Peacock's statement that there is little Canadian opposition -- Canadian opposition is nearly unanimous. Note that the anti-LNG rally held in St. Andrews, New Brunswick, was attended by 1,200 people. St. Andrews has a population of around 1,600. The number of Robbinston voters who supported the Downeast LNG project was merely 227. That hardly qualifies as an endorsement by the Quoddy community.
The "informational meeting" that Quoddy Bay LNG held on Campobello Island was met with a full house of openly hostile island residents, as reported in the Quoddy Tides Newspaper.
- While many ships have used the approach through Canadian waters into Passamaquoddy Bay, there have been times in history where shipping between Canada and the US at this location was embargoed by the US and Great Britain.
- Although Downeast LNG is talking about 50 LNG ships per year, Quoddy Bay LNG is planning on around 150 ships per year. In total, that would mean that nearly every day there would be an LNG carrier either entering or leaving Passamaquoddy Bay, interrupting other waterway users on a regular basis.
- The "extreme currents" aren't the reason why ships would be required to use Canadian waters to enter Passamaquoddy Bay. There are no other viable deep-draft approaches into the Bay without passing through Canada. The only waterway that enters Passamaquoddy Bay where a vessel can remain wholly in US waters is via Lubec narrows; however, it isn't wide enough, possibly isn't deep enough, and there is a low international bridge in the way.
- LNG doesn't "wean" the US off of foreign energy supplies, since LNG comes from overseas countries -- many of whom would like to see the downfall of the US.
- NIMBYism isn't the primary issue. The issue is "where is the best place to locate LNG terminals?" In the absence of any real US LNG siting policy, FERC's policy is to allow industry developers to propose terminals in just any old place, at all -- including sites that violate SIGTTO LNG-industry standards.
Offshore siting (many miles offshore), using submerged buoy technology, eliminates risks to civilians and civilian assets, reduces security risks, makes terminal expansion easier, and makes terminal construction financially competitive with land-based terminals. The first undersea LNG storage tanks are now being built by a Korean firm, meaning that offshore terminals can offload their cargo, but won't have to immediately inject natural gas into the pipeline, taking advantage of market prices and pipeline capacity and demand.
In addition, the Quoddy-area LNG proposals would result in a net negative economic impact on the area, due to demands on infrastructure, tax realities, and the negative impacts on existing industries, as evidenced by the "Whole Bay Study" objectively conducted research by a Vermont rural community development company with over 20-years of experience (paid for by Save Passamaquoddy Bay).
Shoreside LNG terminals use outdated technology, have inherent potential problems related to other ships in the waterway, and frequently pose risks to civilians.
- Lastly, the National Post article states, "Both [Secretary of State Condoleezza] Rice and [Department of Energy Secretary] Bodman have told Canada it is illegal for it to try to prevent ships from entering a U.S. port." Interestingly, this webmaster received a return telephone call today from a representative of the US Department of State, who indicated being unaware of any such statement related to Passamaquoddy Bay from Secretary of State Rice, or of the Department of State taking such a position. Perhaps the National Post reference was referring to another US port with different circumstances, such as on the West Coast.
It is most unlikely that the US State Department would take any stand at all regarding these two Quoddy-area projects, especially since they are both unnecessary: even the LNG industry has indicated that LNG import infrastructure permitted and proposed in the Northeast is being overbuilt by 400%. These local projects are unneeded.
If Dean Girdis actually wanted a sure way of importing LNG to the US, they'd simply purchase the already-permitted Anadarko LNG project in Nova Scotia. The problem is that there is insufficient LNG supply, and Girdis knows it. He announced in 2005 that Downeast LNG might never find a supply or a customer and, to paraphrase Girdis even if Downeast LNG could overcome the 70% probability that his project will fail.
It boils down to this: Girdis (Downeast LNG) and the Smiths (Quoddy Bay LNG) are keeping their projects alive because their venture-capitalist investors are putting money in their pockets for as long as they can keep the projects going. The investors know that their projects are likely to fail, but are gambling that one of their many ventures will succeed. If and when that happens, the investors will make many times over the amount lost on their combined projects. The local in-the-field developers know that they have no chance of success, but want to keep their own income flowing.
At best, the National Post article is an example of irresponsible journalism.
17 November 2006
HOUSTON, TX (MARKET WIRE) November 13, 2006
Adding current construction and planned expansions at existing terminals, capacity is likely to exceed 23 bcfd by the year 2011, creating possibly a glut of terminal space like what occurred in the 1980s when LNG was expected to fill a large portion U.S. demand. [Bold emphasis added.] (Nov 13)
WEBMASTER'S COMMENTS: Doom and gloom hovers persistently low above Downeast LNG and Quoddy Bay LNG.
Girdis said that while many in Canada recognize the importance of the U.S. - Canadian energy relationship, it was regrettable some Canadian politicians are arbitrarily threatening to block the transit of LNG carriers to any terminal on the U.S. side of Passamaquoddy Bay. (Nov 14)
WEBMASTER'S COMMENTS: Some Canadian politicians? All the Canadian community governments surrounding Passamaquoddy Bay, two New Brunswick Premiers (the existing Premier and the Premier-elect), the local Member of Parliament, and the country's top leader, the Prime Minister all stand resolutely opposed to LNG tanker transit into Passamaquoddy Bay.
Arbitrarily? Canada opposes LNG tanker transit into Passamaquoddy Bay, due to the threat and damage that such industry would have on the Canadian economy and health and safety of its citizens.
Romney said he favors off-shore over inland LNG projects because they are safer and less expensive to operate. [Bold emphasis added.] (Nov 13)
FALL RIVER The city's top lawyer said an appeal hearing in Boston last week went very well, and would go a long way toward halting a proposed liquefied natural gas terminal from becoming a reality in the Spindle City.
City and state opponents of the proposed Hess LNG project filed a petition with the U.S. Court of Appeals in September asking it to compel the U.S. Department of Transportation to prescribe uniform safety standards for deciding on the location of LNG facilities.
During a September press conference outside of the Weaver's Cove Energy site where Hess LNG plans to build its LNG import terminal, Mayor Edward M. Lambert Jr. said the 27-year-old law sets out six factors DOT was to use when promulgating location standards for future LNG import terminals. (Nov 11)
- "Guidance on Risk Analysis and Safety Implications of a Large Liquefied Natural Gas Spill over Water," also known as the Sandia Report;
- "Review of the Independent Risk Assessment of the Proposed Cabrillo LNG Deepwater Port Projects," also known as Sandia Off-Shore Report;
- "Comparison of Hypothetical LNG and Fuel Oil Fires on Water," abbreviated as "Lehr Report";
- "Public Safety Issues at the Proposed Fall River LNG Terminal," by James Fay;
- "Modeling LNG Spills in Boston Harbor," better known as the "Quest Study";
- "Consequence Assessment Methods for Incidents Involving Releases from Liquefied Natural Gas Carriers," by ABS Consulting;
- "LNG Facilities in Urban Areas: A Security Risk Management Analysis for Attorney General Patrick Lynch, Rhode Island," by Richard A. Clarke;
- "Brittle Power: Energy Strategy for National Security," by Amory B. Lovins and L. Hunter Lovins.
[Bold emphasis and bullet list added.] (Jun 4)
VENTURA, Calif. A county panel has dealt a setback to a proposed $800-million offshore liquefied natural gas terminal [Cabrillo Port] saying it should comply with the same air quality standards that apply to onshore facilities. (Nov 15)
WEBMASTER'S COMMENTS: On the other hand, LNG industry members are advocating that more "hot" (hotter-burning even more explosive gas, due to greater "heavy" gas content, such as propane) LNG be imported, so that LNG terminals can extract the "heavy," more valuable gases, and sell them separately in order to make a greater profit. Stripping out and selling the heavier gases would then bring the remaining revaporized LNG down to US pipeline specifications. See "New process to help terminals handle rich LNG" and "BG to add NGLs stripping plant at expanded trunkline terminal."
11 November 2006
Voters also approved a conditional gift of $18,000 from Quoddy Bay LNG to reimburse the town for legal fees incurred from the efforts to locate a liquefied natural gas storage facility in the town, 238-167. The question also allowed for the selectmen to accept additional funds for the same purpose. (Nov 9)
WEBMASTER'S COMMENTS: It appears that a flier distributed by LNG proponents may have violated Maine's election advertising law. The flier incorrectly stated that if the Town of Perry didn't accept $18,000 from Quoddy Bay LNG that a town selectman had already deposited in the town's bank account, then the taxpayers would have to cough up that amount of money from tax revenues. The money was to pay for work already completed by the LNG-related attorney who had been hired by a selectman without previously being authorized by the town.
The flier didn't identify who paid for the advertising, as required. Since the flier was used to influence voters in the recent election, this brings into question the legality of the outcome on that ballot question.
The backers of Canaport LNG want it to have its own direct route to New England, rather than hooking into the nearby M&NE pipeline on the Canadian side of the border. They have teamed up with Emera Inc. of Halifax, which would build the $350-million Emera Brunswick pipeline if it gets approval from the National Energy Board.
[Sierra Club member Mark Dittrick] said the liquid natural gas (LNG) terminals proposed for sites along the Passamaquoddy Bay in Maine and a proposed basalt quarry on the Digby Peninsula of Nova Scotia, if built, would put giant cargo ships in the waters where right whales are known to congregate. (Nov 9)
Facilitator Jonathan Reitman distributed a consensus proposal with four key points to generate discussion on what both sides might agree:
• No liquefied natural gas facility on the island.
• Fully develop Mack Point to meet increased shipping demand.
• Establish outdoor recreation and education opportunities on the island, following a 20-year management plan.
• Determine how much land might be used on the island for a container port, if and when needed; that land would not be used in recreation or education activities. (Nov 10)
LYNN City Council President Tim Phelan said he plans to call for a vote on a proposal that would require KeySpan to establish certain security measures at its waterfront Liquefied Natural Gas facility at Tuesday's City Council meeting.
“If the BLM wishes to dispose of these parcels, the disposition of these parcels should be the return of these lands to the Confederated Tribes of the Coos, Lower Umpqua and Siuslaw Indians,” wrote Tribal Administrator Francis Somday in an August letter to the agency.
Schwarzenegger said BHP Billiton's terminal "could probably be the most safest one for California." However, before Tuesday's election he released a stern statement declaring he had not made a decision. "I have not taken a position on the BHP project at Oxnard, or any LNG project," Schwarzenegger said.
While offshore facilities may appeal to critics who oppose land-based terminals because of public safety concerns, offshore terminals usually have "limited or distant access to natural gas distribution pipelines, lack of onshore services, and in most instances, higher initial investments." (Nov 10)
WEBMASTER'S COMMENTS: Excelerate Energy indicates that their offshore Energy Bridge submerged buoy LNG terminal importing system is financially competitive to construct, as compared with other types of LNG terminals. (Watch Excelerate Energy's Energy Bridge QuickTime video; 13 MB.) The Gulf Gateway Energy Bridge, 116 miles off the coast of Louisiana, was completed in 2005 at a cost of $70 million. (Read the PDF document, Energy Bridge Fact Sheets, 2.1 MB.)
9 November 2006
WEBMASTER'S COMMENTS: One wonders if, by "degree of openness," Downeast LNG's President Dean Girdis is referring to his withholding from FERC that he lobbied the Canadian Federal Government and was summarily rebuffed. Save Passamaquoddy Bay readily acknowledges Girdis's lack of openness.
WEBMASTER'S COMMENTS: Suggestion to Downeast LNG & Quoddy Bay LNG: The Anadarko LNG terminal is available, already licensed, and all ready to go. Of course, the reason that the Anadarko project is stalled is because they can't get an LNG supply the same problem that Downeast LNG and Quoddy Bay LNG would have, if there really were a chance that they'd complete their projects.
If the Maine in-the-field LNG developers weren't being well paid by venture capitalists who according to Downeast LNG's President Dean Girdis don't expect the projects to succeed, then they would have already left Maine. That's the reason that they aren't interested in the Anadarko project Anadarko is already permitted and has no future, so Girdis and the Smiths would have to go back to their regular jobs right away, rather than after the Downeast LNG and Quoddy Bay LNG investors realize they're pouring money down a couple of sinkholes.
Repsol is already one of the top suppliers of LNG to the U.S., mainly from Trinidad and Tobago, where it cools the gas into a liquid for shipping in tankers. (Nov 7)
Pipeline company Emera is seeking permission from the NEB to build a high-pressure natural gas pipeline from an Irving-Repsol-owned liquid natural gas (LNG) terminal in Mispec, N.B., to the American border. (Nov 8)
WEBMASTER'S COMMENTS: The Fall River LNG project violates SIGTTO world-class LNG-industry standards. It's shameful that FERC approved that location in the first place.
...speakers from among the roughly 50 residents who attended said they were outraged they had little time to review a complex environmental impact report of more than 1,000 pages, released Oct. 27, before last night's hearing at Gloucester High School.
The state Department of Environmental Management will conduct two public hearings this month on applications by Weaver's Cove Energy for a dredging permit and a water quality certificate to dredge in connection with its plans to build a liquid natural gas or LNG facility in Fall River, Mass. (Nov 8)
According to S.L. Cornelius, the president of Beacon Port LLC, ConocoPhillips' regasification capacity at the Freeport and Golden Pass import facilities in the western Gulf of Mexico has obviated the "business need" to proceed with the Beacon Port project. [Bold emphasis added.]
WEBMASTER'S COMMENTS: Another unnecessary LNG project bites the dust. Some other dead LNG projects include ConocoPhillips's Compass Port, ExxonMobil's Pearl Crossing, and BP's Bay Crossing/Pelican Island.
...Governor Schwarzenegger has now decided the joint report will be sent for review to the California Coastal Commission which is responsible for the protection, conservation, restoration, and enhancement of "environmental and human-based resources of the California coast and ocean for environmentally sustainable and prudent use".
Bill Cooper: "...the truth of the matter is that LNG won't even burn in a liquefied state. And once it's gasified, now it's a gas, it's not explosive in an uncontained environment and it just simply burns back to the source."
"I think we have often talked about, here in the United States, about energy independence and that's, I guess, a buzzword that started after the oil embargoes back in the 1970s. And really, it's another myth that we just need to dispel." (Nov 7)
WEBMASTER'S COMMENTS: Are there any LNG advocates at all who don't try to deceive the public? Yes, Bill Cooper is correct when he says that LNG won't burn in its liquefied state but, liquid gasoline won't burn, either, and most people know how unsafe having unconfined liquid gasoline near people can be. Cooper then states that natural gas from LNG won't explode in an unconfined environment, even though the Sandia Report that earlier in the television program, he urges people to read refers to a 1978 US Coast Guard study that demonstrated unconfined LNG vapor explosions. And, finally, Cooper advocates that the US shouldn't try to attain energy independence. Why? Because if it were achieved, he'd be out of a job.
WEBMASTER'S COMMENTS: Will this technology enable offshore LNG terminals such as the ones proposed off Gloucester, Massachusetts to store LNG near the offshore terminal, rather than regasify it immediately or store it on ships? What are the environmental and safety implications?
DOHA, Qatar Workers here are putting the finishing touches on a plant that within days will begin converting natural gas into clean-burning diesel fuel, a development that could someday cut sulfurous smog from big city skylines.
The onset of green diesel may begin to cut smog-inducing sulfur, but it won't slow global warming, which is linked to the carbon emissions from burning hydrocarbons. Experts say GTL offers only a modest cut in carbon emissions because the base product, natural gas, contains less carbon than crude oil. (Nov 6)
WEBMASTER'S COMMENTS: But, in this case, "green" means "kinda, sorta" green.
5 November 2006
WEBMASTER'S COMMENTS: The Fall River LNG terminal site violates SIGTTO LNG-industry world-class standards.
The Maritime Administration and the U.S. Coast Guard have released the Final Environmental Impact Statement for the Northeast Gateway Energy Bridge LNG terminal proposed for offshore Massachusetts. (Oct 31)
WEBMASTER'S COMMENTS: This offshore terminal is safer for the public than the terminals proposed for Passamaquoddy Bay. The Northeast Gateway Terminal also moots the Passamaquoddy Bay projects.
"Former Federal Energy Regulatory Commission Chairman Patrick H. Wood III has stated that the Northeast's energy needs can be met with two new LNG import facilities. Synapse found that two LNG facilities, each the size of Broadwater, are under construction in Canada. ... There is also a glut of LNG proposals in our region - 18 proposed facilities - the vast majority of which energy experts agree will not be built. [Bold emphasis added.] (Nov 3)
State environmental officials presented yesterday test results showing that sediment in the area that would be dredged as part of the proposed liquefied natural gas facility at Sparrows Point contains high levels of petroleum products and other contaminates. (Nov 2)
State lawmakers are dusting off the 1975 Coastal Facilities Act, which serves as an umbrella process for the wetlands, air and water quality permits Virginia-based AES Corp. will need to move forward with a $400 million gas terminal and 85-mile pipeline, said Elder Ghigiarelli, deputy director of the state’s Wetlands and Waterways program. (Nov 2)
WEBMASTER'S COMMENTS: When energy companies would be making billions, and when energy company profits are at an all-time high, the idea of offering tax breaks especially by states with poor populations is repulsive.
The patented ALPHASIMPLEX® process, which can be incorporated into any LNG receiving terminal, employs a unique configuration of conventional cryogenic gas processing equipment to recover ethane and heavier hydrocarbons (NGL products) from LNG. Compared to the leading competitor process, 90 percent to 95 percent of compression power is eliminated, thereby reducing capital cost of the project, improving facility reliability and up time, and, minimizing operating costs. (Nov 1)
According to [Tony Schwalbe, Williams' environmental leader on the project], Williams decided to consider an underwater route after it received a number of complaints from area residents and the city of Coos Bay about its original route plan. The company's first preferred pipeline proposal designated a route that went through a number of private properties in Glasgow along its 233-mile route to the main natural gas line. (Nov 2)
Calypso LNG, LLC, wednesday announced that it has received a notification from the United States Coast Guard stating that Calypso's application for a Deepwater Port License [for 10 miles offshore from Port Everglades, Florida] is complete. A statutory review period for approval of the license to build and operate Calypso's proposed offshore liquefied natural gas facility is expected to begin shortly. (Nov 3)
Liquefied natural gas (LNG) imported to the Gulf Coast of the U.S. is certain to become a stronger competitive factor. Because there are existing pipelines connecting the Gulf Coast to the Midwest, the most immediate competition will be from the new LNG facility currently being constructed at Sabine Pass on the Gulf Coast. (Nov 4)
In a terse, pointed statement faxed to The Malibu Times from the office of the governor, Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger said, "I have NOT taken a position on the BHP project at Oxnard, or ANY LNG project." (Nov 1)
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Liquefied natural gas is an incredibly wasteful energy product and the capital needed to compress it and then decompress it and then transport it between those two points is a pretty expensive outlay. As much as a third of the energy in gas is used in just those processes, not including the transportation. Then there's a lot of risks related to explosions. [Bold red emphasis added] (Nov 2)
2 November 2006
According to Ambra Dickie, spokesman for Foreign Affairs and International Trade Canada, the Canadian representatives clearly stated that the waters of Passamaquoddy Bay are Canadian internal waters and there is no right of innocent passage for foreign vessels. "Canada maintains the right to regulate the use of these waters," she says. (Oct 27)
WEBMASTER'S COMMENTS: There is no question that Canada will prevent LNG tankers from transiting Head Harbour Passage. US Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice was informed of this some time ago. Canada's Prime Minister Harper announced it in September to Parliament. Even Dean Girdis was told, face-to-face, when he attempted in September to lobby the Canadian Government in Ottawa.
Both local LNG developers claim that they have rights under the UN Law of the Sea Convention that would permit LNG tanker transit into Passamaquoddy Bay. The developers are wrong on several counts :
- The Law of the Sea Convention is a treaty among signatories, and the US has repeatedly refused to sign-on as a member, stating that it is not in the best interests of the United States. Treaties require agreement among all involved parties. US interests cannot require Canada to provide rights to US interests that the US by refusing to sign the treaty would not afford to Canada;
- Most of the Bay of Fundy, including Head Harbour Passage, are defined by the UN Convention on the Law of the Sea, as internal Canadian waters, giving Canada the right to determine what marine traffic transits through them. The Law of the Sea defines as Canadian internal waters all water to the east of a straight line drawn from the west shore of St. Andrews, NB, to the southwest end of Nova Scotia;
- The Innocent Passage provision of the Law of the Sea would be violated by LNG transit, since such transit would pose hazards to residents of the host coastal state (Canada).
The LNG developers are in the hypocritical, circular-argument position of claiming protection under the Law of the Sea, while at the same time rejecting the Law of the Sea provisions that would prevent their LNG transit. Simply put, they can't have it both ways, and they can't have it, at all.
Downeast LNG and Quoddy Bay LLC/LNG failed to do their required homework before beginning their projects, and the result is that both have failed, needlessly creating division among friends, family, and neighbors. Had Downeast LNG President Dean Girdis and Quoddy Bay LLC President Don Smith done their proper homework, they would have never targeted Passamaquoddy Bay. Unfortunately for all of us living here, we're the ones who are paying for the developers' lack of due diligence.
A portion of the pier for the proposed Quoddy Bay LNG project at Split Rock would be in waters within the Eastport city limits, but city officials were not notified of that part of the liquefied natural gas project proposal. (Oct 27)
WEBMASTER'S COMMENTS: Quoddy Bay LLC has again demonstrated its contempt for the interests of local people and communities.
Voters will be asked if they want to enact a recall ordinance and also if they wish to accept funds from Quoddy Bay LNG as reimbursement for the town's legal expenses incurred in connection with Quoddy Bay's proposal to locate a liquefied natural gas (LNG) storage facility in Perry. (Oct 27)
WEBMASTER'S COMMENTS: FERC has actually done something right for the public in this rulemaking. Downeast LNG and Quoddy Bay LNG can no longer classify FERC docket submissions as "Non-internet public." Such documents are now to be made available to the general public over FERC's Internet Library dockets. Save Passamaquoddy Bay has filed a request to both local project FERC dockets to convert all previously-filed "Non-internet public" documents into "Public" documents that can be accessed by the public on FERC's eLibrary.
The Minerals Management Service of the Interior Department, which oversees royalty collections, has come under growing criticism from lawmakers in both parties for losing track of billions of dollars in royalties.
WEBMASTER'S COMMENTS: The Department of the Interior is mimicking its negligence within its Bureau of Indian Affairs (BIA) it isn't keeping track of other people's (US taxpayer's) money. In contrast to the BIA's abuse of Indian Trust funds, though, where Native Americans have been cheated out of their rightful funds, and haven't received justice in over 10 years in court, politicians and the Inspector General are outraged now, even though they haven't taken an equal stand regarding Indian Trust abuse.
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