Elected officials in the historic town of Astoria, OR, with slightly less than 10,000 population and a legacy as the first permanent U.S. settlement west of the Rockies, voted last month to intervene at FERC in the proposed liquefied natural gas (LNG) terminal project slated for Bradwood Landing. The Astoria City Council voted 4-0 in a special meeting last Thursday to take the action Earlier in the week elected officials in a neighboring city and Clatsop County also took similar action.

In addition to the proposed terminal sites along the Columbia, related pipelines and so-called U.S. Coast Guard-designated “exclusion zones” have various stakeholders concerned about use of the river for fishing and recreation and land use on surrounding properties.

The Bradwood Landing proposal by Northern Star Natural Gas, the most advanced of four proposals for LNG facilities in the Columbia, is located about 40 miles up river to the east of Astoria, which is located in the extreme northwest point of the state at the mouth of the river where it meets the Pacific Ocean, dividing the states of Washington and Oregon. Calpine Corp. has a proposal nearest to Astoria in Warrenton, OR, at the Columbia River mouth. Warrenton’s city commission voted June 27 to intervene in the LNG case.

Astoria City Manager Paul Benoit told local news media his city council vote did not take a position — for or against — the LNG proposal at Bradwood Landing, but merely gives the city “a place at the table; it’s a motion to participate.”

Astoria officials said they wanted the ability to view documents in the case and appeal rulings, if necessary, at the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission. Warrenton and Clatsop County officials felt the same way.

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