Monday, July 1, 2013

Time Out on LNG


Today, one hundred and thirty six environmental and public advocacy groups sent a letter to the Maritime Administration asking that the public be given more time to consider and comment on a propose liquefied natural gas (LNG) port that would be constructed in the waters off Long Island and the Jersey Shore. After the application was announced on June 14, the project sponsor subsequently released fifteen hundred pages of a four thousand plus page application that federal agencies have found to be still incomplete in more than one hundred and fifty specific areas. Despite the length, technical complexity, and incomplete nature of the material, the public is required to read, analyze and meaningfully comment on the application by July 23.

Sean Dixon, Coastal Policy Attorney at Clean Ocean Action said, “This LNG port will adversely impact the economies and ecologies depended upon by millions of Americans and the public deserves the opportunity to give it careful consideration.”  Dixon noted that New Jersey Governor Chris Christie vetoed this proposal in 2011 (and reaffirmed it in 2012) because, according to the Governor’s original veto (attached to this press release), it “ would present unacceptable and substantial risks to the State’s residents, natural resources, economy and security… stifle investment in renewable energy technologies by increasing our reliance on foreign sources… [and] create a heightened risk in a densely developed region, including potential accidents or sabotage disrupting commerce in the Port of New York and New Jersey.” Dixon notes that “this application is for the same port that was wrong for the people and economies of New York and New Jersey last year, and the year before that; Liberty may be back, but nothing has changed.”

Bruce Ferguson of Catskill Citizens for Safe Energy is concerned that construction of an LNG terminal could lead to increased shale gas extraction, or “fracking”. “I’m well aware that the sponsor says that the proposed port will be used to import LNG from abroad, but there is nothing in the law that can prevent the sponsor, or a future owner of the port, from using it to ship fracked shale gas to Europe and Asia.” Ferguson also noted that the United States will soon become a net exporter of natural gas and that existing import facilities are being revamped to handle exports.

The Maritime Administration has scheduled just two public hearings on the proposal, the minimum allowed by law:

New York State
Tuesday, July 9
Open House: 4:30pm - 5:30pm
Hearing: 6:00pm - 8:00pm
Allegria Hotel
80 West Broadway, Long Beach, NY
(516) 889-1300

New Jersey
Wednesday, July 10
Open House: 4:30pm - 5:30pm
Hearing: 6:00pm - 8:00pm
NJ Convention and Exposition Center
97 Sunfield Avenue, Edison, NJ
(732) 417-1400

Clean Ocean Action is also hosting a “Citizens” Hearing – open to all – the next day, on July 11:

Citizens’ Hearing
Thursday, July 11
Rally Against LNG: 4:30pm - 5:30pm
Hearing: 6:00pm - 8:00pm
Sea Bright, NJ,  Public Beach
(732) 872-011

“Residents of the entire region have grave concerns over this proposed LNG port that could easily be converted to facilitate gas exports instead of imports. This likely conversion would increase demand throughout the Northeast for dangerous pipelines and fracking, and disrupt families' lives for hundreds of miles,” said Emily Wurth, Water Program Director at Food & Water Watch. “Residents of many states deserve numerous public hearings to voice their concerns about this ill-advised plan.”

“We are affirming the request for additional public hearings and an extension for the public comment period for the ‘Port Ambrose’ project in the interest of the general public’s health, safety and the rights of the public to comment on this application; this port is a threat to the ocean, marine life, and ecosystems that sustain us all,” said Suzanne Golas, csjp, Director of WATERSPIRIT.  “As the Maritime Administration is charged with ‘meeting the country’s maritime commercial mobility while supporting the national security and protecting the environment,’ we find this request for additional public hearings and an extension for the public comment period clearly within the scope of the Maritime Administration’s responsibility to ensure comprehensive and adequate input from the general public while reviewing this application.”

The 130 organizations that signed on to a letter to the Maritime Administration asking that the public be given more time to consider and comment on a propose liquefied natural gas (LNG) port that would be constructed in the waters off Long Island and the Jersey Shore are as follows:

Matt Smith
Lyna Hinkel
Ryan Talbott
Allegheny Defense Project
Christopher Huch
Alliance for a Living Ocean (ALO)
Tim Dillingham
American Littoral Society
Sandy Batty
Stephen A. Sanders
Appalachian Citizens' Law Center, Inc.
Don Torino
Bergen County Audubon Society
Karen Feridun
Berks Gas Truth
Kevin Kamps
Beyond Nuclear
Tracy Sides PhD, MPH
Bravely Be
Charlotte Phillips, M.D.
Brooklyn For Peace
Kathy Maher
Bus for Progress
Daniel Morrissey
Capital District Against Fracking
Wes Gillingham
Catskill Mountainkeeper
Bruce Ferguson
Catskills Citizens for Safe Energy
Rose Braz
Center for Biological Diversity
Kenneth Fogarty
Chenango Community Action for Renewable Energy
Allen Johnson
Christian for the Mountains
John Jongen
Citizens' Alliance for a Pristine Perinton (CAPP)
Barbara Warren
Citizens' Environmental Coalition
Joe Levine
Citizens for Water
Nathan Kipnis
Citizens' Greener Evanston
Isaac Silberman-Gorn
City of Binghamton Residents Against Hydrofracking
Cindy Zipf
Clean Ocean Action
Harriet Shugarman
Vernon Haltom
Coal River Mountain Watch
Martha Cameron
Coalition Against the Rockaway Pipeline
Arthur H. Kopelman, Ph. D.
Coastal Research and Education Society of Long Island
David F. Slottje
Community Enviornmental Defense
Suzy Winkler
Concerned Burlington Neighbors
Jeremy Samuelson
Concerned Citizens of Montauk
Cheryl Cary
Concerned Residents of Madison County
Mina Takahashi
Concerned Residents of Oxford
Edie Ehlert
Crawford Stewardship Project
Fay Muir
Croton Watershed Clean Water Coalition
B. Arrindell
Damascus Citizens for Sustainability
Maya K. van Rossum
Delaware Riverkeeper Network
Deborah Goldberg
Earthjustice Northeast Office
Jennifer Krill
Ken Gale
Eco-Logic, WBAI-FM
Robert Spiegel
Edison Wetlands Association
Doug Couchon
Elmirans and Friends Against Fracking
Doug O'Malley
Environment New Jersey
Eric Whalen
Environment New York
Katherine Nadeau
Environmental Advocates of New York
Heather White
Environmental Working Group
Ted Glick
Essex/Passaic Green Party
John Malizia
Fishermen's Conservation Association
Jimmy Lovgren
Fishermens Dock Co-Op
Jim Walsh
Food & Water Watch
Marc W. McCord
Julia Walsh
Frack Action
Cynthia Carestio
Frack Free Genesee
Shane Davis  
Albert Crudo
Friends of Sustainable Sidney
Sheila Cohen
Gas Drilling Awareness for Cortland County
Josh Fox
Gasland & Gasland Part II
Alan Muller
Green Delaware
Captain Bill Sheehan
Hackensack Riverkeeper
Bo Lipari
Hector Clean Waters
Alma Hasse
Idaho Concerned Area Residents for the Environment
Dan Mundy
Jamaica bay Ecowatchers
Suzanne Tallichet
Kentuckians for the Commonweath
Marcia Halligan
Kickapoo Peace Circle
Rev. Nancy Kasper
Lakeshore Environmental Action
Sally Robinson
League of Women Voters of NY
Toni Zimmer
League of Women Voters of NJ
Shelley DePaul
Lenape Nation of Pennsylvania
Fred Harding
Maiden Rock Concerned Citizens
Margo Pellegrino
Capt. Rick Etzel
Montauk Boatman, Inc. (MBI)
David Denenberg
Nassau County
Ida Sanoff
Natural Resources Protective Association (NRPA)
Judy Triechel
Nevada Nuclear Waste Task Force
Glenn A. Arthur
New Jersey Council of Diving Clubs (NJCDC)
David Pringle
New Jersey Environmental Federation
JK Canepa
New York Climate Action Group
Cathleen Breen
New York Public Interest Research Group (NYPIRG)
David Braun
New Yorkers Against Fracking
Julia Somers
NJ Highlands Coalition
Claudia Borecky
North and Central Merrick Civic Association
Deborah A. Mans
NY/NJ Baykeeper
Donna Stein
NYC Friends of Clearwater
Buck Moorhead
Patrick Robbins & Kim Fraczek 
Occupy the Pipeline
Janet Keating
Ohio Valley Environmental Coalition
Peter Bergel
Oregon PeaceWorks
Marianne Waldow
OWS Environmental Solidarity
Lawrence Hamm
People's Organization For Progress
Kevin F. Lind
Powder River Basin Resource Council
Randy Hurst
Protect Orange County
Iris Marie Bloom
Protecting Our Waters
Bill Schultz
Gordian Raacke
Renewable Energy Long Island
Len Bjorkman
Residents Against Fracking Tioga (RAFT)
Bill Podulka
Residents Opposing Unsafe Shale-Gas Extraction (ROUSE)
Robert Cross
Responsible Drilling Alliance (RDA)
Kate Hudson
Riverkeeper, Inc.
Anna Sears & Nedra Harvey
Rochesterians Concerned About Unsafe Shale-gas Extraction (R-CAUSE)
Carol Barnett & Jordan Kleiman
Rush Citizens Concerned about Hydrofracking
Karen London
SACRED (Sullivan Area Citizens for Responsible Energy Development)
Clare Donohue
Sane Energy Project
Gail Musante
Sanford-Oquaga Area Concerned Citizens (S-OACC)
Britta Wenzel
Save Barnegat Bay
Gerri Wiley
Save the Southern Tier
Sara Hess
Alice Slater
Shut Down Indian Point Now
Roger Downs
Sierra Club - Atlantic Chapter
Ann I. Aurelio
Sierra Club of Long Island
Jeff Tittel
Sierra Club of New Jersey
Linda Eckstein
Social Action Committee of UUC Glens Falls
Tabitha Tripp
Southern Illinoisans Against Fracturuing our Environment
John Malizia
Staten Island Tuna Club
Pramilla Malick
Stop the Minisink Compressor Station
Mark Pezzati
Stop the Pipeline (STP)
Michael Chojnicki
Sullivan Alliance for Sustainable Development (SASD)
Kathy Russell
SUNY Cortland CGIS Environmentqal Justice Committee
Richie Lee
Surfers' Environmental Alliance
Larry Moriarty
Surfrider Foundation, Central Long Island Chapter
Allison Candelmo
Surfrider Foundation, Jersey Shore Chapter
Nick Lynn
Surfrider Foundation, NYC Chapter
Krissy Halkes
Surfrider Foundation, South Jersey Chapter
Pam Solo
The Civil Society Institute
Bob DeLuca
The Group for the East End
Margaret Wood
The Lakeland Unitarian Universalist
Rachel Davis
The Mothers Project for Sustainable Energy, NJ
Sandra L. Frankel
Town of Brighton
Ling Tsou
United for Action
Suzanne Golas, csjp
Asha Canalos
We the People Matter
Nada Khader
WESPAC Foundation, Inc.
Eric Justian
West Michigan Jobs Group
Susan Van Dolson
Westchester for Change
Verle Reinicke
Western Organization of  Resource Councils
Jim Gurley
Winona Area Citizens Concerned about Silica Mining (CASM)

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