"For much of the state of Maine, the environment is the economy"
2011 Nov 3
Calais LNG Lacks Veracity, Viability
Calais LNG's outdated website continues to misrepresent the domestic natural gas supply and market, and to incorrectly claim it has a viable project, according to Robert Godfrey, a spokesperson for Save Passamaquoddy Bay, opponent of the proposed and improperly sited LNG projects in the bay shared by the US and Canada.
Save Passamaquoddy Bay made two October filings to the US Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) requesting that FERC dismiss Calais LNG from the permitting process for failing to meet permitting requirements for well over one year, a similar lack of compliance that resulted in Quoddy Bay LNG permits being dismissed by FERC in 2008.
"The Calais LNG website still claims Goldman Sachs is providing financial support to the project," said Godfrey. "In actuality, Goldman Sachs dumped the project in August 2010, taking millions in losses. Now, Goldman Sachs is telling the LNG industry to do exactly the opposite of what Calais LNG is proposing: Goldman Sachs says the US has so much domestic natural gas that the market is in exporting LNG from the US to overseas markets — the exact opposite of what Calais LNG is proposing." (See http://www.vancouversun.com/business/Asian+fuel+demands+spur+plans+natural+terminals+west+coast/5624433/story.html)
The US — including the Northeast — is drowning in domestic natural gas supply, according to the US Energy Information Administration (see http://www.lngworldnews.com/canada-canaport-lng-sees-a-bright-future/), FERC (see https://www.ferc.gov/market-oversight/st-mkt-ovr/som-rpt-2010.pdf), and members of the natural gas industry (see http://www.platts.com/RSSFeedDetailedNews/RSSFeed/NaturalGas/8852601). Even Eastern Maine has access to plenty, Godfrey says. "Just look at the pipeline currently under construction between the Baileyville paper mill north of Calais and the Maritimes & Northeast Pipeline," he stated.
"Calais LNG's website refers to their former terminal site as if they still had access to it. But, the company lost access to the property as of September 1st, 2010. In the last year, Calais LNG has made no progress in reacquiring the property or in obtaining financing," Godfrey said. In addition, Calais LNG has closed and vacated its offices.
"What's more, Calais LNG claims on its website (http://www.calaislng.com/) that it will 'work in a cooperative, non-adversarial manner with public agencies.' In reality, in 2010, Calais LNG withheld from the Maine Board of Environmental Protection and from FERC the fact that the company had lost its financing and site access. When those losses were finally disclosed to the Maine Board, Calais LNG repeatedly asked the state to delay the permitting hearings. The State Board finally forced them to withdraw their permits. Deception with permitting agencies is certainly not 'being cooperative'," he said.
"It is hypocritical," Godfrey concluded, "that Calais LNG principals who advise their other business clients on energy investments and strategy to continue to provide incorrect and misleading information regarding their own phantom energy project. It's time for FERC to pull the plug on the non-compliant, stalled, outdated, and unnecessary Calais LNG proposal, and for Mr. Gelber and his cohorts to move on."
Save Passamaquoddy Bay (SPB) is an alliance of citizens from the U.S., the Passamaquoddy Tribe, and Canada, who oppose siting LNG industrial facilities in Passamaquoddy Bay, and who advocate adherence to world-recognized LNG terminal siting best safe practices as published by the Society of International Gas Tanker and Terminal Operators (SIGTTO). SPB advocates creative-economy, tradition-based, and tourism-based economic development for the international Passamaquoddy Bay area.