Tuesday, May 17, 2005

No Reason to Oppose LNG Proposal Yet? Broadwater is Wrong Again

When Chuck Schumer announced yesterday that he would oppose Broadwater's plan to build a liquefied natural gas facility in the middle of Long Island Sound, the company's response was that there is "no rational justification" for opposing the project before preliminary studies are completed.

As usual, Broadwater couldn't be more wrong.

Here are two rational justifications:

1. Long Island Sound is a public resource. It is owned by the people of New York and Connecticut. A major industrial facility should not be built in the Sound because it would usurp publicly-owned waters.

2. Construction of a major industrial facility in the middle of the Sound could easily set a precedent for future proposals.

We don't need preliminary studies to oppose the LNG terminal on that basis. (It is guaranteed, by the way, that when the preliminary studies are done, Broadwater will say there's no reason to oppose the project until the final studies are done.)

Schumer said yesterday he'll stop the project, which is a joint venture of TransCanada and Shell, by pressuring the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission, according to Newsday:

"FERC is very susceptible to what Congress wants. We set its budget and approve its members," Schumer, a Democrat, said. If FERC approves the project, Schumer added, he will push for special legislation to block it.

Maybe Broadwater should get him on the phone and then transfer the call to the Suffolk County Legislature, so he can discuss it with the local pols.


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