The Commonwealth Comment

Wednesday, November 29, 2006

LNG Not for Me!

Yesterday a federal appeals court rejected an attempted block of the proposed Liquid Natural Gas (LNG) facility in Fall River, Massachusetts' Weaver's Cove along the banks of the Taunton River. The lawsuit was filed by Massachusetts Attorney General Tom Riley and Rhode Island Attorney General Patrick Lynch.

The court was not pleased with the two officials and reprimanded them saying that they should have approached the U.S. Department of Transportation asking them to set minimum standards of safety before coming to the court. "One might expect, for example, that the petitioners could ask the agency to adopt site safety standards, arguing that the present standards are inadequate, and then seek judicial review if and when the agency denied this request," the court wrote in its decision. Riley has since filed an appeal with the Department of Transportation contesting the LNG terminal standards.

Beth Stone, Tom Reily's spokeswoman, defended the official's suit against the LNG site. "We brought this action to urge the Department of Transportation to set safety standards that encourage citing LNG terminals far away from population centers. Weaver's Cove is not the place for an LNG terminal."

Approximately 64,000 residents of Fall River and the surrounding communities of Somerset and Freetown live along the river and could be harmed if any accidents at or attacks on the proposed facility should occur.

For More Information on LNG here are two opposing websites:

Coalition for Responsible Siting of LNG Facilities

Weaver's Cover Energy

My Opinion: It seems like common sense to me not to build a potential terrorist target and accident waiting to happen in the middle of one of the state's larger cities. Maybe I'm crazy. But, when several politicians from both parties come together to oppose this project you know its a serious issue. 64,000 lives are in danger with this terminal on the Taunton River. Is building this facility in the middle of the city really that crucial? Why not offshore away from residents? This has the potential to be very bad, and it is unfortunate that the courts don't seem to care about public safety and hand the problem off to the Department of Transportation.



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