Liquefied Natural Gas Terminal Bills Move

By CMTA Staff

Capitol Update, July 8, 2005 Share this on FacebookTweet thisEmail this to a friend

Legislation that would significantly slow down the permitting process for liquefied natural gas (LNG) terminals gained momentum on Wednesday, July 6th, with back-to-back votes of approval by two key policy committees.

SB 426 (Joe Simitian, D-Palo Alto) and SB 1003 (Martha Escutia, D-Whittier) require the California Energy Commission (CEC) to conduct a needs assessment study to determine the number of LNG terminals needed to meet the state's future natural gas demand, and to compare and rank proposed sites.

The bills were approved first by the Assembly Utilities and Commerce Committee, where just a week earlier they had failed passage, and then by the Assembly Natural Resources Committee.  Earlier this week, Assembly Speaker Fabian Nunez (D-Los Angeles) named Assemblywoman Fran Pavley (D-Agoura Hills), an environmental leader who has voiced skepticism about LNG, to the committee, a move that helped assure the two bills’ passage.

CMTA opposes both bills.  California's demand for natural gas is expected to grow significantly within the next decade. California's power plants rely on natural gas and our state only produces 16 percent of what we consume. To help meet that demand, LNG can play a larger role in the state's energy supply mix.

The CEC has already documented the growing unmet need for natural gas in the state.  The fact that private capital is being spent on permitting LNG facilities shows that investors agree that the state will need more natural gas. Additional efforts to document need as provided in SB 426 and SB 1003 are unnecessary and could delay LNG supplies into the state.

The proposed LNG projects are presently undergoing extensive public review by multiple federal and state agencies. Each project should have the opportunity to meet federal and state requirements and acquire a permit without the CEC choosing winners among them.

CMTA invites you to join a growing coalition concerned about a potential shortage of natural gas in California and the need for alternative sources such as deliveries of LNG. Californians for Clean Affordable Safe Energy (Cal-CASE) will be helping educate the public throughout the state about this important issue.

There are dozens of organizations already signed up in support including CMTA, California Chamber of Commerce, California Retailers Association, Consumers First, Western States Petroleum Association, California League of Food Processors and the Silicon Valley Leadership Group.

Individual companies are also needed. To list your company's name as a supporter or to learn more, go to the Cal-CASE website
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