FERC approves second Ore. LNG facility

The Federal Energy Regulatory Commission today authorized a new liquefied natural gas terminal on the southwest Oregon coast.

The Jordan Cove Energy Project LP in Coos Bay would have the capacity to supply 1 billion cubic feet of LNG per day and have a storage capacity of 320,000 cubic meters. This is the second LNG terminal FERC has authorized in the area. The commission approved Northern Star's Bradwood terminal in Astoria, Ore., last year amid protests from Oregon Gov. Ted Kulongoski (D) that FERC had not provided a sufficient market analysis.

A third LNG terminal also near Astoria is among three other terminals currently under FERC review.

Chairman Jon Wellinghoff voted against authorization of the Jordan Cove plant, saying energy alternatives and environmental effects had not been sufficiently analyzed. He also previously dissented against Bradwood and AES Sparrows Point's LNG facility near Baltimore for similar reasons.

"I believe in this order there is a real issue in determining whether or not there is a real need," Wellinghoff said.

The FERC chairman said the Jordan Cove certificate analysis did not factor in the rise of shale gas and other domestic natural gas supply against the cost and environmental impact of delivery of gas from overseas. The commission also analyzed the cost and benefit of the project when the price of natural gas was $12 per million British thermal units, he said.

Wellinghoff added he also had safety concerns for this project. "The Jordan Cove facility is less than a mile away from the southern regional Oregon airport," he said. "The end of the runway is a straight shot" to the LNG facility, he said.

FERC today also affirmed its decision to grant approval for AES Sparrows Point LNG facility near Baltimore, Md. Wellinghoff maintained his dissent against that decision as well. The AES facility would provide gas up to 1.5 billion cubic feet per day and transport the gas to Eagle, Pa., through an 88-mile pipeline (E&ENews PM, Jan. 15).

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