Long Island Sound LNG Task Force Calls On FERC To Postpone Final Report Until Facts Are In

January 23, 2007

The Long Island Sound LNG Task Force today formally called on the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) to postpone finalizing its draft environmental impact statement until questions regarding public safety and environmental protection can be answered.

“It is our view that finalizing this report without adequately answering several very serious questions about protecting the public and safeguarding the environment is irresponsible. For example, FERC’s report fails to take into account the findings of a relatively recent congressional report stating that the consequences of an LNG spill on open water are not truly known. Several environmental experts have questioned the credibility of FERC’s draft, saying that it lacked substance and demonstrated a lack of understanding about environmental science. For FERC to finalize its report without addressing these concerns would be an ill-advised and needless rush to judgment that could adversely affect Connecticut for generations to come,” said Senator Fasano.

“It is impossible for me to support or sign off on this proposed monolith with so many unresolved concerns about its environmental, economic, and aesthetic impact, not to mention the grave security threat so many of us believe it will become if it is built,” Senator Stillman said. “Furthermore, I’m still not convinced there’s even a market for the liquid natural gas that might be offloaded there, given the number of comparable, competing projects coming along up and down New England’s coast.”

The co-chairs noted that Broadwater Energy, LLC, the applicants seeking permission to install the liquefied natural gas terminal off of the Connecticut coastline, is responsible for demonstrating that the project would not harm Long Island Sound, not the burden of others to demonstrate that the proposed LNG facility would harm the environment.

Members of the LNG Long Island Sound Task Force today discussed its formal response to FERC’s draft environmental impact statement at a press conference held at the Legislative Office Building in Hartford. They were joined by representatives of the State Attorney General’s Office, environmental experts, and other interested parties. In addition to calling on FERC to postpone finalizing its report, the task force issued several recommendations regarding steps to protect the public and safeguard the environment should FERC finalize its report and, ultimately, move toward approving the project.