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Harm From LNG Project On Oregon Coast Could Be Offset, Report Says

Tugboats in Coos Bay
Gary Halvorson, Oregon State Archives
Tugboats in Coos Bay

That sums up the preliminary findings of the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission, which issued a draft Environmental Impact Statement Friday for the Jordan Cove project.

“Nothing in the EIS is a surprise to us,” said Michael Hinrichs, the public affairs director for Jordan Cove and Pacific Connector.

He said the company has spent two years analyzing the potential environmental impacts of the project.

The Coos Bay facility would liquefy natural gas piped in from Canada and the Rocky Mountains for export to Asia. It would require a pipeline (the Pacific Connector) running through Jackson, Douglas, Klamath and Coos counties in Southern Oregon.

Before federal approval is given, FERC recommends Jordan Cove expand its proposed efforts to ensure seismic safety, protect endangered species and migratory birds, and formalize relationships with American Indian tribes in the region.

The Jordan Cove and Pacific Connector LNG project would be one of the largest infrastructure undertakings in Oregon history. The 36-inch underground pipeline would run through 232 miles of public and private lands.

The sheer scale and the diverse ecosystems the project would touch has prompted opposition from environmental groups, including . Program Director Forrest English said he’s still working this way through the 5,000-page Environmental Impact Statement.

English says his group will likely raise specific questions about impacts on threatened coho salmon in the region.

FERC will be accepting public comment on the Jordan Cove draft EIS until February 13, 2015.

Copyright 2020 EarthFix. To see more, visit .

Jes Burns is a reporter for OPB's Science & Environment unit. Jes has a degree in English literature from Duke University and a master's degree from the University of Oregon's School of Journalism and Communications.