Backers of NorthernStar Natural Gas’ Bradwood Landing liquefied natural gas (LNG) project, slated for a site along the Columbia River, wrote to Oregon Gov. Ted Kulongoski Tuesday to address concerns he and others have raised about the project’s FERC environmental review.
Last December the governor’s staff sent a memo to the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) that was critical of the environmental review of the project. NorthernStar is expected to also address that memo in a progress report to the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC).
“We wanted to make sure the state had all updated and corrected information,” said a Bradwood spokesperson, noting that the company attached a 49-page matrix to the letter that includes more than 100 issues raised by the state and responded to each of those. The need for LNG in the region also was questioned, and Bradwood tried to reiterate that at least nine studies by state, regional and federal sources had supported the need for LNG because of expected future declines in supplies from traditional sources in western Canada and the U.S. Rockies.
Kulongoski told FERC in a Dec. 18 letter that the draft environmental review of the proposed Bradwood LNG project was “incomplete and flawed.” His comments joined those of others questioning the review. Generally, Kulongoski said, a more comprehensive environmental review of his state’s three proposed LNG projects — now in various stages of permitting — is needed (see Daily GPI, Dec. 21, 2007).
“I appreciate the state of Oregon’s analysis of the draft environmental impact statement (EIS) because such a complex proposal requires a thorough examination of the record to ensure that the public’s interest has been served,” said NorthernStar CEO William “Si” Garrett, emphasizing that he thinks Oregon relied on information in the FERC draft EIS that was at least several months old at the time.
Bradwood said it has continued to submit “significant additional information” beyond what was put in the draft EIS.
In addition to repeating its often-cited need for additional natural gas supplies in the Pacific Northwest, NorthernStar in the letter provided more detail to the state on what it called: (a) detailed geotechnical site evaluations, (b) a contention its environmental plan exceeds requirements, (c) proposed dredging in the Columbia River will have “minimal environment impact,” (d) NorthernStar is prepared to pay for all safety and security guards, and (e) as a long-range contingency, a decommissioning plan has been developed on the proposed 1 Bcf/d terminal.
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