In a move that they said would likely kill Weaver's Cove Energy LLC's proposal to build a liquefied natural gas (LNG) terminal at Fall River, MA, Reps. Barney Frank (D-MA) and Jim McGovern (D-MA) have proposed an amendment to the House Energy and Water Appropriations bill that would ban federal funds from being used to advance the permitting process or in any other way further the project.

"No funds made available by this Act may be used to take any action to authorize the construction of any liquefied natural gas terminal or its infrastructure to be located within five miles of the City of Fall River, Massachusetts, or to authorize vessels carrying liquefied natural gas to serve such terminal," according to the proposal.

The amendment leaves no room for ambiguity, Frank said during a press conference at Fall River Aug. 19. Frank and McGovern said they have been assured by a House subcommittee that a close version of the language will be included in the larger bill, and Senators John Kerry (D-MA) and Scott Brown (R-MA) will work with them to include the provision in the Senate version of the bill.

"There will be no LNG plant built in Fall River," Frank said.

On Thursday a Weaver's Cove spokesman said the company could not comment until copies of the complete bill into which the proposed language will be inserted are made public. "This region has among the highest energy costs in the nation," the spokesman said. "An LNG import terminal constructed in Fall River will drive down energy costs in the New England States."

The Weaver's Cove project has been the target of fierce and so far successful opposition by local, state and federal officials, who are adamantly against building LNG infrastructure in their backyard, although they admit that more natural gas supply is needed for the region. If built, the proposed terminal would provide 800 MMcf/d of peak sendout capacity, 400 MMcf/d of baseload supply and 200,000 metric tons of LNG storage.

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