Maine Politics

From the Piscataqua to the St. John

Monday, March 28, 2005

LNG Vote Today

600 or so voters in Perry today will decide whether or not they will allow a partnership of the Passamaquoddy Tribe and the Oklahoma City-based Quoddy Bay LLC to build a liquefied natural gas terminal on nearby tribal land. The vote is required because a condition of a land transfer agreement from the town to the tribe 19 years ago which stipulates that Perry residents must approve any commercial development.

From the BDN:
Bangor Daily News PhotoLNG is not a new energy source. It has been used in the United States for the past 60 years. Ships bring in the product from countries that include Algeria, Indonesia, Libya, Oman and Tobago, to U.S. terminals where it is processed. There are four terminals in the United States: Cove Point, Md.; Everett, Mass.; Elba Island, Ga.; and Lake Charles, La.

The gas is an odorless, colorless, noncorrosive and nontoxic substance transported by ships. To move it, the gas must be chilled to minus 264 degrees Fahrenheit where it becomes a liquid.

Locally, the past few weeks have been baptism by fire as area residents rush to learn all they can about LNG.

Opponents of the project have challenged the developers and the tribe on safety aspects of the project as well as possible impacts on the environment.

Plans call for one ship a week to sail past Head Harbor on Campobello Island, New Brunswick, navigating northwest of Eastport to Gleason Cove, adjacent to tribal lands. It will dock at a three-quarter-mile-long pier that is to be built from shore. LNG will be piped under the dock to possibly three LNG tanks. The gas would be heated and then compressed to be piped to the Maritime Provinces pipeline in Baileyville.

Upward of 1,000 people would be hired during the construction phase. When operational, the plant would employ 70 or more people.

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