... FERC Releases Environmental Review of Oregon LNG Project

FERC Releases Draft Environmental Review for Oregon LNG Project

Federal regulators have issued a draft environmental review of an Oregon LNG project. The company announced that the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) has issued its Draft Environmental Impact Statement (DEIS) for its Warrenton, Oregon, bidirectional terminal. The document also covers the Oregon Pipeline connector project and the upgrade of a portion of the Williams Co. pipeline in Washington State.

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All interested parties, including local, state and federal agencies, will have the opportunity to review the document and submit comments to FERC. The comment period closes Oct. 6. In its previously released scheduling notice, FERC set Feb. 12, 2016, as the date of issuance of the Final Environmental Impact Statement, and May 12, 2016, as the 90-day Federal Authorization Decision Deadline. These dates represent final steps in the FERC approval process.

Oregon LNG’s terminal in Oregon would be a $7 billion construction project that would provide 3,000 jobs during construction, and 150 permanent family-wage jobs when operational. In addition, the project would create approximately 1,400 permanent, indirect and induced jobs in Oregon. Oregon LNG has committed to using unionized labor for construction, while preserving a certain percentage of contracts for local and minority-owned businesses.

Once in service, the facility and associated pipelines will pay over $90 million a year in property taxes in Oregon and Washington, making it the largest single property taxpayer in the State of Oregon. According to a recent analysis conducted by ECONorthwest — based on forecast appraisal rates and 2014-2015 levy rates — the city of Warrenton would receive $24.9 million annually, Clatsop County would receive $11.7 million, Clatsop County Community College an additional $6.2 million, and the Warrenton-Hammond School District 30 would receive $37.7 million (without taking into account state equalization). Annually, Astoria School District No. 1 would receive over $892,000 and the Port of Astoria would get $924,000.

Oregon LNG’s terminal site is adjacent to the federally-maintained Columbia River shipping channel, on an existing man-made peninsula that has long been reserved for use by heavy, marine-dependent industries. With electric power supplied mostly from hydroelectric and wind resources, it will also have one of the lowest carbon footprints of any proposed LNG project in North America. The DEIS concludes that the limited environmental impacts associated with the project would be reduced or mitigated so that they would not be significant.

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