Colorado’s fracking fanatics desperate to breathe life into the Jordan Cove Project have stepped up their lobbying campaign, with a little help from their friends at The Daily Sentinel.
The Jordan Cove LNG project and 232-mile connecting transmission pipeline were the focus of meetings in Grand Junction and Rifle this week. Last month the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) denied the project but left the door open for a rehearing, which of course the Jordan Cove backers requested. On May 8, the FERC will decide whether to reconsider the project. If the commission decides not to reconsider, the companies can, and most certainly will, reapply.
“If they deny it, then we’ll have to reapply and that’s what we’ll do,” said Bob Braddock, former Colorado resident and now senior adviser on the Jordan Cove project.
Gas backers carrying the torch
Urge feds to approve Jordan Cove, officials implore Western Slope
Western Colorado residents, businesses and officials need to urge a federal agency to take into account the public benefit of a liquefied natural gas terminal at the point that gas come out of the earth, some 1,200 miles away.
That’s the message that officials with the Jordan Cove LNG terminal in Oregon, Williams Companies, and others worked to get across in stops Tuesday in Grand Junction.
The owners of Jordan Cove are asking the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission to reconsider its decision of March 11 rejecting its certificate to build the $6 billion terminal that would deliver liquefied natural gas to Japan, Korea and other Pacific Rim markets …
… Efforts to demonstrate the extent to which northwest Colorado would benefit from the terminal on Coos Bay include the support of U.S. Sens. Michael Bennet and Cory Gardner, a Democrat and Republican respectively, U.S. Rep. Scott Tipton, R-Colo., and Colorado Gov. John Hickenlooper.
Colorado’s senators, along with senators from Wyoming and New Mexico, are working to include LNG in energy legislation, Bennet told elected officials from Mesa and Garfield counties and the cities of Grand Junction and Rifle …
Senator Bennet said the legislation is intended to streamline the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) export permitting process. “It will make sure the DOE acts quickly on these applications,” he added.
Wow. He’s good. He said that on Tuesday. Lo and behold on Wednesday, the U.S. Senate-who-never-agree-on-anything passed the legislation 85-12. What an amazing coincidence!
Holy cow! That same day, the Jordan Cove backers announced more buyers for liquefied natural gas (LNG). I mean, it’s almost like they planned the whole thing like a PR campaign.
RIFLE — Companies have contracted for about three-quarters of the capacity for the pipeline that would serve the Jordan Cove liquefied natural gas export project in Oregon since a federal denial of the project in March based on the pipeline’s lack of any customers.
Proponents of Jordan Cove and the pipeline that would serve it hope the 77 percent contractual subscription for the pipeline capacity will change the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission’s mind on the matter.
Those proponents include boosters on the Western Slope who see Jordan Cove as a potential outlet for locally produced natural gas. David Ludlam, executive director of the West Slope Colorado Oil and Gas Association, estimated Wednesday that if all the plant’s gas came from the Piceance Basin, it could take roughly eight to 12 drilling rigs to supply the plant, which would have an initial capacity of about a billion cubic feet per day. Just two rigs are operating locally now …
.. In addition, Macquarie Energy LLC has committed to another 20 percent or so of the pipeline capacity, presumably for gas it would contract to have processed at Jordan Cove for export. And Avista Corp. has committed to a small portion of the capacity for use in supplying gas in the Oregon area.
“These are binding agreements,” Blaine Pritchett, the pipeline project director for Williams, said in an interview.
“Contractual subscriptions” and “binding agreements” – but we have yet to see any of these so-called contracts and/or agreements. None of the companies who have allegedly “contracted” with Veresen – JERA Co., ITOCHU Corp., Macquerie Energy, Avista Corp. – have made any public announcements. All the press releases are from Veresen, and the language they used is “preliminary agreements.”
We all know the oil & gas industry, politicians, and fracking fanatics like WSCOGA, are masters at PSYOPS, propaganda, and lobbying. There is absolutely no reason to believe this is anything other than a house of cards created to make it look like the Jordan Cove Project is viable.
The project opposition in Oregon has questioned the level of commitment by the Japanese companies because Veresen has described the deals as preliminary ones.
Said Jordan Cove spokesman Michael Hinrichs, “It’s agreed to, and then you work out the details as you firm everything up.”
Bob Braddock, senior project advisor for Veresen, said the reason the other deals didn’t happen sooner “was because everything was waiting for the JERA decision.”
He descried [sic] that as an anchor deal and Hinrichs said it was years in the making. But it didn’t come together until later in March, after FERC’s decision.
Veresen couldn’t disclose any of its customers to the public until it had signed agreements, Braddock said.
“It wouldn’t have been an issue in the past (for FERC) but for whatever reason it became an issue here,” he said …
A likely story indeed. Even if they couldn’t disclose their customers to the public they could have disclosed them to the FERC. And why wouldn’t they? It’s beyond belief that in the process of presenting a project 12 years in the making they would have withheld information about potential customers from the FERC.
But here’s where the fracking fanatics whole propaganda campaign comes crashing down. They all keep saying that the FERC denied Jordan Cove because Veresen didn’t have enough LNG customers. From The Daily Sentinel:
FERC denied the projects due to a lack of agreements or expressions of interest from customers for a pipeline project that would have impacts including eminent domain proceedings against some landowners along the pipeline route.
That’s a mischaracterization of the FERC’s denial.
First of all, the FERC denied the Pacific Connector Pipeline application and without the pipeline there would be no supply of natural gas to the Jordan Cove facility, therefore it too was denied.
In the order, the FERC applied its “Certificate Policy Statement” in which “the Commission balances the public benefits against the potential adverse consequences.” In this case, the FERC focused primarily on the impacts of the Pacific Connector Pipeline over the impacts of the natural gas terminal. The Pacific Connector Pipeline would cross over 157 miles of privately owned lands. A majority of the approximately 630 affected landowners have lobbied against the project for more than a decade, citing various negative economic and environmental consequences.
The FERC acknowledged that the best way to demonstrate need for the project is through evidence of long-term service agreements. But Pacific Connector had provided only non-binding term sheets that might eventually lead to service agreements, and thus no evidence of a demand for liquefied natural gas in the Asian market. For those reasons, the Commission found insufficient evidence of need to justify giving Pacific Connector the power of eminent domain.
Lacking enough evidence of a public benefit, the pipeline application was denied and without the pipeline, that meant the Jordan Cove liquefied natural gas terminal would not be viable.
The fracking fanatics and The Daily Sentinel are saying the FERC decided the LNG facility wasn’t viable because of lack of customers therefore the pipeline was also denied. They’re wrong.
The core issue in the FERC decision is the Pacific Connector Pipeline, not the Jordan Cove LNG facility. The question remains whether the public benefit of the pipeline should overrule the rights of private property owners and subject them to eminent domain.
Even if the LNG contracts-agreements-subscriptions are real, what is the public benefit?
None. The Jordan Cove Project is not a public works project. It doesn’t even have the support of Oregon Governor Kate Brown.
Colorado politicians tout the benefits to the state’s economy but where’s the evidence of public support? Where’s the polling data that shows their constituents, the people of Colorado, are in favor of seizing private property from landowners so the oil & gas operators can continue to frack up our environment? The only ones complaining about the lack of drilling rigs in western Colorado are the fracking fanatics.
The last time I checked the Jordan Cove Project is still dead.
Let’s keep it that way! Tell the FERC to stand firm on their Order of Denial.
Jordan Cove’s fracking fanatics —
U.S. Senators: John Barrasso, Cory Gardner, Mike Enzi, Orrin Hatch, Mike Lee, Michael Bennet
U.S. House of Representatives: Cynthia Lummis, Scott Tipton, Doug Lamborn, Mike Coffman, Rob Bishop, Chris Stewart, Jason Chaffetz, Ken Buck, Mia Love
Colorado Governor John Hickenlooper
Colorado Senators: Ray Scott, Randy Baumgardner
Colorado Representatives: Yeullin Willett, Dan Thurlow, Bob Rankin
Garfield County Commissioners: John Martin, Tom Jankovsky, Mike Samson
Mesa County Commissioners: Scott McInnis, John Justman, Rose Pugliese
Rio Blanco County Commissioners: Jeff Eskelson, Shawn Bolton, Jon Hill
Aron Diaz, Town of Silt Trustee and Republican candidate for Garfield County Commissioner
Phyllis Norris, Mayor of Grand Junction
AGNC – Associated Governments of Northwestern Colorado
WSCOGA – West Slope Colorado Oil & Gas Association
Grand Junction Chamber of Commerce
Grand Junction Economic Partnership
Coldwell Banker Commercial Prime Properties
The Daily Sentinel — Grand Junction
Oil & gas operators: FRAM, Caerus, Encana, Genesis Gas and Oil, Gunnison Energy, Laramie Energy, SG Interests, Shear Inc., Ursa