Jordan Cove LNG project vote delayed by feds

JACKSON CO., Ore. — The future of the controversial Jordan Cove LNG project and accompanied pipeline is still uncertain.

Federal energy regulators voted to delay it Thursday morning. This comes one day after the state of Oregon denied a key permit to move the project forward.

The Jordan Cove Pipeline would span 229 miles through the state. Many impacted landowners say the project went against both state authority and their constitutional rights.

“We have been dealing with this for 15 years and at some point, somebody needs to say enough is enough,” Deb Evans, landowner, said.

The Jordan Cove LNG project and pipeline has been in the works for well over a decade. Some residents who would have been personally effected are hoping the project is denied.

“For a foreign company to come, a Canadian company to come onto our property and ask for our government for permission to take our property against our will is wrong,” Evans said.

The natural gas line would extend from Malin through Evans’ property to Coos Bay, where gas would then be liquefied at Jordan Cove to be exported.

Pembina, the Canadian company behind the project, took it over several years ago and worked hard to get support. It said last year more than 80% of affected landowners had signed on for the pipeline.

Pembina says it’ll inject a huge amount of cash into the region. If completed, it says the project will bring 50 million dollars in new tax revenue to the state and 60 million to the southern Oregon region each year.

“There’s pipelines all over place in this country and for some reason we act like this one is special,” Tom Terbeck, pipeline supporter, said.

But thousands, like Evans, were never on board and voiced that at hearings throughout the region.

“The private property thing is huge for the landowners on the pipeline fight and we are a diverse group of all political persuasions and we are in solid agreement that this project is wrong and it should be stopped,” Evans said.

The environmental impact is why most are against it. The project would release two billion metric tons of carbon dioxide every year and become Oregon’s largest polluter.  Pembina says it’s option is better than coal, which is what the exported liquefied natural gas would replace in Asia.

Though the future of the project is uncertain, the state’s decision Wednesday to reject it could be a fatal blow. The state says Jordan Cove would negatively affect endangered species, ecosystems, fishing, among other areas. FERC could vote again as early as next week.

President Trump’s Secretary of Commerce, Wilbur Ross, could overrule the state’s decision if an appeal is made and he finds the project is appropriate within the coastal zone management act.

Pembina says it’s reviewing the state’s vote and is eagerly waiting for FERC’s final decision.

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