Green groups pressure Obama to reject LNG export expansion

posted at 10:41 am on March 19, 2014 by Bruce McQuain

Right on cue, as it becomes obvious that Europe needs to be less dependent on Russian gas and oil, environmental groups here in the US have begun stepping up presure on President Obama to reject building the infrastructure necessary to help realize that strategic need. A coalition of environmental groups is calling on the administration to reject permits that would build Liquid Natural Gas (LNG) export terminals.

Environmental groups called on President Obama Tuesday to reject pending applications to build liquefied natural gas (LNG) export terminals, citing the negative impacts from natural gas throughout its life cycle.

The pressure from green groups comes amid Republican calls for the administration to speed up the application process in response to Russia’s use of its natural gas resources as political leverage over Europe. Russia supplies most of Ukraine’s natural gas and is also a major supplier throughout much of Europe.

The GOP argues the U.S. could loosen Russia’s grip over Ukraine and Europe by building more terminals and exporting more natural gas.

Success in delaying the Keystone XL pipeline through their pressure has emboldened these groups. And, with President Obama stating that climate change was one of his second term priorities, the groups are looking for every opportunity to use climate change as a justification for delaying or stopping hyrdocarbon use of any sort. In this case, it’s natural gas. Their first target is the proposed LNG terminal at Cove Point in Lusby, Md.:

The Sierra Club, 350.org and the Chesapeake Coalition, along with other allied groups, specifically asked Obama to have the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) to conduct a full environmental review of Dominion Resources Inc.’s proposed Cove Point terminal.

“The proposed Cove Point LNG terminal would certainly make gas companies richer, but it would make our own country more poor,” Michael Brune, executive director of Sierra Club, told reporters Tuesday. “Building a new LNG terminal doesn’t strengthen our nation, and it further disrupts our climate.”

The groups argue increasing production of natural gas would lead to more hydraulic fracturing, commonly known as fracking, a natural-gas extraction process they said causes massive harm to the environment while releasing large amounts of greenhouse gas.

Bill McKibben, founder of 350.org, warned that supporting natural gas could be politically detrimental to the president.

“Everybody’s watching now, this kind of stuff. And Democratic politicians who thought they might get by with a wink and a nod aren’t,” McKibben said. “Fracking’s become a dirty word, for good reason. “

Of course, fracking isn’t a “dirty word” to anyone but environmentalists. Fracking has been in constant use since 1948 on over a million oil wells. It isn’t “new technology”, but certainly it is now improved technology and it allows us the bonanza in natural gas that we’re presently enjoying.

And if these environmental groups were really all about reducing greenhouse gases, they’d likely get behind the use of natural gas like the Sierra Club did in 2008. At the time it was taking millions from the natural gas industry:

“Use renewables as much as we can. Natural gas is the next-cleanest fuel, then we have oil and then we have coal… We’re trying to make sure that we innovatively and creatively use whatever fuel we burn (and) that we rely primarily on the fuels that are the cleanest… And, among the fossil fuels, natural gas is at the top.” – Carl Pope, Chairman, Sierra Club

That’s precisely the argument the environmental coalition received in answer to their claims:

In a statement responding to the letter, Dominion said natural gas could cut greenhouse gas emissions in half compared to using coal for electricity.

“Slowing or preventing natural gas exports from the United States is a step in exactly the wrong direction for those who are concerned about climate change,” Pamela Faggert, Dominion’s chief environmental officer, said in the statement.

This, of course, puts the Obama administration in a pickle.  On the one hand, it is clear that increasing LNG exports is a strategically necessary move to counter the leverage Russia now enjoys over Europe with Europes dependence on Russian gas.  But to do that, the numerous LNG terminal applications must be approved.  On the other hand, this administration has been one of the most tenacious foes of the domestic petroleum industry in the history of the country.  Only new finds on state and private lands have seen an increase in production as federal permits have been slow-walked or denied during the Obama administration and large projects, such as Keystone, delayed or possibly denied altogether.

The administration will now be faced with a decision to support its strategic allies and make it harder for Russia to expand its power or cave into the green group pressure and further cripple the country’s ability to wean itself from imported petroleum and exploit the huge natural gas reserves we enjoy.

Politics and ideology usually prevail with this administration so it won’t suprise anyone if, given Keystone, the premits are delayed indefinitely or rejected outright.

~McQ


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Canadian sands oil shipments by rail:

2008 450,000 cars

Environuts – working hard to screw-up the environment so you don’t have to.

Turtle317 on March 19, 2014 at 10:48 AM

edit to the above:

2008 less than 10,000 cars
2014 greater than 450,000 cars

Turtle317 on March 19, 2014 at 10:48 AM

The envirobots have no interest in cleaner fuel, smarter fuels or biofuel. If it burns, it’s verboten.

Next on the agenda… wood.

Walter L. Newton on March 19, 2014 at 10:53 AM

Be interesting to know what all these sicko greenies use for energy?

Wade on March 19, 2014 at 10:53 AM

The administration will now be faced with a decision to support its strategic allies and make it harder for Russia to expand its power or cave into the green group pressure and further cripple the country’s ability to wean itself from imported petroleum and exploit the huge natural gas reserves we enjoy.

At some point, we need to stop calling these environmental progressive-fascists ‘greens’ and start calling them what they are properly called in Europe – Watermelons.

Adding support to the enemies of the US by pressuring the Administration to do all it can to impede the country’s efforts towards energy independence is just an additional benefit for these watermelons who, like the President, seek to fundamentally change this country via the Alinsky-Cloward&Piven strategy.

It is rare where we can point to any decisions made by this Administration to offer real support and assistance to our strategic allies or even friends in need. With the naive and feckless world view of BHO, our friends and allies are far less important than ‘resetting the world view of the US’ by appeasing and enabling our enemies.

Athos on March 19, 2014 at 10:55 AM

The environmental groups are really a front for the communists. They should be rejected at every turn.
Obama needs a good beat down, Putin is doing a great job and needs to turn up the heat so that America (sans Obama and his cronies) can get back to being number one and start kicking ass again.

redguy on March 19, 2014 at 10:57 AM

Idiots.

Midas on March 19, 2014 at 10:57 AM

Shipping natural gas to Europe to counter Putin makes it less likely in the near future we’ll have to ship troops to Russia to counter Putin.

But while the Marcellus Shale gas is the closest U.S. source to Europe, not only does it have the administration to get past for LNG exports, it also has to deal with the fact that the Atlantic Coast in that area is mainly Blue States with large contingents of greenies who think their TVs, iPads and other amenities of modern life can be powered by the electric fairies. So it’s more likely that if Europe gets any LNG exports, it’s going to be from the Gulf Coast-West Texas fields, since if Obama cares about green lighting any of the terminals, he’ll get less grief from OKing those in the South than those in the East.

jon1979 on March 19, 2014 at 10:59 AM

the groups are looking for every opportunity to use climate change as a justification for delaying or stopping hydrocarbon use of any sort.

Let’s see. Shutting down all mechanical activity of any type in the United States would probably reduce hydrocarbon use a lot. And there are some efficient dual uses involved. For instance, we could return to mules and plows for farming and, for defense, we could use pitchforks from the same farms. Just like the good old days. Cool.

IndieDogg on March 19, 2014 at 11:01 AM

Be interesting to know what all these sicko greenies use for energy?

Wade on March 19, 2014 at 10:53 AM

One of their “brilliant” alternatives is bicycle generators.

Moochele approved.

tru2tx on March 19, 2014 at 11:03 AM

These groups have always been communist. And like all communist, they couldn’t care less about the environment.

Flange on March 19, 2014 at 11:07 AM

In fact, it is becoming increasingly clear to me that The One is, in fact, “working closely with (his) strategic ally” – Russia. From Iran, to Syria, European missile defense; creating vacuums, worldwide, for the emergence of a resurgent Nationalistic Russia, playing straight man to Putin’s fun-making of the US, to his refusal to strengthen America’s energy infrastructure – the list goes on. Reluctantly, I’ve come to the conclusion that The One welcomes Russian hegemon status. It allows him to betray Israel and Western civilization by proxy, while being able to concentrate more on the destruction of the Constitution.

vnvet on March 19, 2014 at 11:11 AM

environmental groups here in the US

are in the pay of the Russians and OPEC.

rbj on March 19, 2014 at 11:12 AM

At some point, we need to stop calling these environmental progressive-fascists ‘greens’ and start calling them what they are properly called in Europe – Watermelons.

How about albatroses

crankyoldlady on March 19, 2014 at 11:12 AM

When will the greenies figure out that reducing our own production of fuels doesn’t reduce world emissions of CO2? If the U.S. doesn’t export its gas, Russia will. If Canada doesn’t export its oil to the United States, it will export it to China. If something burns, it will be burned somewhere.

Be interesting to know what all these sicko greenies use for energy?

Wade on March 19, 2014 at 10:53 AM

Global warming!

But if the greenies really hate fossil fuels so much, let them move to Lancaster, PA, and live with the Amish.

Oh, by the way, horse manure emits methane, and burning candles emit carbon dioxide.

Steve Z on March 19, 2014 at 11:12 AM

Be interesting to know what all these sicko greenies use for energy?

Wade on March 19, 2014 at 10:53 AM

Socialism is never for the socialist.

CurtZHP on March 19, 2014 at 11:14 AM

Is it just me (and redguy above) or does it seem that by some coincidence environmental policies always seem to line up with left-wing/socialist/communist interests?

Just askin’

Blaise on March 19, 2014 at 11:14 AM

Meanwhile in Paris:
http://www.npr.org/blogs/thetwo-way/2014/03/17/290849704/to-clear-its-air-paris-tests-odd-or-even-driving-days

For the most part, only cars with odd-numbered license plates could be on the rues et boulevards Monday (since it’s the 17th of March). On Tuesday, the city’s streets were to be open only to cars with even-numbered plates.

But not everyone observed the ban: Police issued some 4,000 tickets to drivers whose cars have even-numbered plates, hitting drivers with a fine of around $30, according to France 24.

“I know it’s not great to say it but I’m willing to take my car and pay the fine to get my kids to school, because I don’t have the choice,” one woman told the TV network.

This is our future. For as much as we complain about EPA, just wait until they begin regulating individuals in earnest.

airupthere on March 19, 2014 at 11:14 AM

The first export terminal will be completed late 2015 and likely there will never be more than a dozen. You can drill until you drop, and build export terminals everywhere. HOWEVER, it is going to be at least 5 years before the pipeline infrastructure is sorted out between delivery to terminals, reversals of existing pipelines, building new pipelines and raising the $10′s (if not $100′s) of billions to do all of this.

That is the free market at work.

Kermit on March 19, 2014 at 11:19 AM

Why are these nuts so opposed to carbon? As a carbon based life form I resent that.

crankyoldlady on March 19, 2014 at 11:19 AM

Why are these nuts so opposed to carbon? As a carbon based life form I resent that.

crankyoldlady on March 19, 2014 at 11:19 AM

Why are you so opposed to cheap energy for American citizens?

astonerii on March 19, 2014 at 11:21 AM

Funny seeing my hometown in print, I live in Lusby and as usual can tell you the majority of locals here supports the project in a big way, including the local businesses.

99% of the opposition is from out of town, big money liberal groups, who could care less about our local economy and need for jobs. They have no business meddling in our affairs but yet they do. They lie about our communities desires and imo are morally reprehensible for such actions.

Seriously I wish they all would rot in hell for their elitist near-do-gooder attitudes that only result in hurting the average person’s livelihood.

Skwor on March 19, 2014 at 11:27 AM

That is the free market at work.

Kermit on March 19, 2014 at 11:19 AM

Those challenges are less the issue of the free market and more the issue of the incompetence, fecklessness, and myopic vision of the current Administration and their progressive-fascist supporters / agenda.

They know that the needed infrastructure needs lead time before it can come on-line – and that by delaying the construction of that infrastructure, in favor of their other ‘priorities’, have significant impacts on our future options. By limiting those options, they are working to fulfill their long term agenda – which are not in the best interests of the free market, the US, or our allies / friends.

Athos on March 19, 2014 at 11:28 AM

environmental groups here in the US
are in the pay of the Russians and OPEC.
rbj on March 19, 2014 at 11:12 AM

Beat me to it.

Charlemagne on March 19, 2014 at 11:31 AM

jon1979 on March 19, 2014 at 10:59 AM

Considering that there are existing import terminals which already have docks and storage tanks but only need liquefaction and cyrogenic pumps to load, quickest route to export will be more and larger pipelines to Gulf Coast and a cost of somewhere up to $10 bill per export terminal.

We are talking about well above $100 billion in cash that has to be raised first for just a dozen export terminals and several years of construction AFTER financing is raised.

Cheniere, in Louisiana, is closest to completion and should begin exporting end of 2015.

Kermit on March 19, 2014 at 11:32 AM

At what point do we simply admit that “green groups” are a bunch of anti-capitalist, small minded kooks who do nothing but obfuscate and pine for the says if a less industrialized world?

Oh yes, and they are largely supported by Democrats. Democrats by the way, who largely use and benefit from all the accoutrements of an industrialized world- but wrongly believe somehow they can “save the planet” by blocking the production and export of fossil fuels.

Let me be the first to say- that ship has sailed. We moved into an in an industrialized age during the 19th century and their is no turning back. Sorry.

Using the auspices of government to corrupt and improperly impede private industry is what we call tyranny.

Yet they cant figure out why the economy is so bad and there are no jobs :-/

Marcus Traianus on March 19, 2014 at 11:40 AM

Natural gas sales should be linked to the EU country fracking for their own natural gas. Shipping natural gas by LNG tanker is dangerous AND when the enviros wake up and figure out that natural gas can be used as a super clean fuel (lighter engines, therefore lighter cars and higher mileage) for autos and trucks, we will need all get.

KenInIL on March 19, 2014 at 11:51 AM

For the most part, only cars with odd-numbered license plates could be on the rues et boulevards Monday (since it’s the 17th of March). On Tuesday, the city’s streets were to be open only to cars with even-numbered plates.

I’m all set then. I have two vehicles – one with even numbered plates and the other with odd numbered plates.

climbnjump on March 19, 2014 at 11:51 AM

The proposed Cove Point LNG terminal would certainly make gas companies richer..

…including all those retirement accounts of teachers, firemen and police invested in stable energy stocks! In fact, they may actually continue to be able to retire!

…not that the Sierra group cares about those evil teachers, firemen and police officers.

dominigan on March 19, 2014 at 11:55 AM

From a professional engineer’s standpoint, let me say that policies and people that promote the consumption of natural gas to fire base power boilers to produce electricity represent The Most Stupid Idea EVER. EVER!
Coal DAMN IT COAL! It is the perfect fuel for a fixed location system.
And you can scrub the crap out of it if you must.
But burning natural gas to generate BASE electrical power?
Only a dumbshiite would demand such folly.

Missilengr on March 19, 2014 at 12:00 PM

environmental groups here in the US
are in the pay of the Russians and OPEC.
rbj on March 19, 2014 at 11:12 AM

Beat me to it.

Charlemagne on March 19, 2014 at 11:31 AM

Including Matt Damon and his stupid movie.

slickwillie2001 on March 19, 2014 at 12:01 PM

…who are these people?

KOOLAID2 on March 19, 2014 at 12:01 PM

There is an article in the Crimson:
Divest Harvard Holds “Teach-Ins” Outside Massachusetts Hall
http://www.thecrimson.com/article/2014/3/11/divest-harvard-teach-in/

In the comments section a poster refutes the CO2 as Killer #1 argument against all comers, successfully. I recommend you read it,

ShadrachSmith on March 19, 2014 at 12:05 PM

Missilengr on March 19, 2014 at 12:00 PM

and with all of this heavy crude from Canada now being refined in large reconfigured Midwest refineries we can even boost the BTU value by blending with petcoke.

Kermit on March 19, 2014 at 12:05 PM

Yet they are perfectly happy to be shipping thousands of tons of wood pellets to Great Britain?

Lonetown on March 19, 2014 at 12:07 PM

Athos on March 19, 2014 at 11:28 AM

Some yes and most no, over 200 gas wells in PA which are not yet hooked up to pipelines. Then they gas most be gathered and be processed before getting into interstate pipeline. You don’t just drill then VIOLA! gas appears 100 miles away.

Kermit on March 19, 2014 at 12:08 PM

I repeat a phrase from a NucPower prof from decades ago in regards to the EnviroNazis:
‘Let them have their way and we’ll all FREEZE and STARVE in the DARK’

Missilengr on March 19, 2014 at 12:15 PM

2 words, Cloward Piven

Pegcity on March 19, 2014 at 12:15 PM

They will bring pressure wherever, whenever, whatever Putin and the Saudis controllers tell them to. It is obvious these jerks are being controlled by foreign interests. Maybe we should load all those environmentalists (preservationists) up in shipping containers and ship them to Russia (nee USSR and soon to return) and any islamist oil producing country. By the way, there is no mentalist in environmentalist. Either that, if we have the guts, trace and document their sources of money and if found to be foreign, try them for treason.

Old Country Boy on March 19, 2014 at 12:19 PM

I repeat a phrase from a NucPower prof from decades ago in regards to the EnviroNazis:
‘Let them have their way and we’ll all FREEZE and STARVE in the DARK’

Missilengr on March 19, 2014 at 12:15 PM

Because transporting energy from us to Europe and Asia and driving the price of energy here up is totally going to be of benefit to us. Not to mention our progeny. Sure, someone will make more money, but across the nation any person who consumes anything created with energy will be paying more, businesses counting on inexpensive energy are going to not thrive and might go under.

astonerii on March 19, 2014 at 12:35 PM

Old Country Boy on March 19, 2014 at 12:19 PM

Holy cow, you are just exactly like they are.

astonerii on March 19, 2014 at 12:36 PM

Including Matt Damon and his stupid movie.

slickwillie2001 on March 19, 2014 at 12:01 PM

Damon personifies the ‘idiot’ in ‘useful idiot’….

Athos on March 19, 2014 at 12:51 PM

Damon personifies the ‘idiot’ in ‘useful idiot’….

Athos on March 19, 2014 at 12:51 PM

Just looking at that guy makes me sick. It is like something is missing in his core. Completely missing.

astonerii on March 19, 2014 at 12:53 PM

Right on cue, the watermelon environmentalists seek to prevent anything that could undermine Comrade Putin’s efforts to reunite the old USSR.

Adjoran on March 19, 2014 at 1:25 PM

Old Country Boy on March 19, 2014 at 12:19 PM
Holy cow, you are just exactly like they are.

astonerii on March 19, 2014 at 12:36 PM

Not quite. Unlike you I am self aware, and have been to the socialist camps.

When your enemies do not recognize any law except that with which they can destroy you; When your enemy controllers have often stated that you need to be placed in concentration camps, When your enemy steals the sweat of your brow with impunity, it is best to become the meanest SOB on the block. Show me a good loser and I will show you a looser. These fellow travelers and useful idiots want us to go quietly into the night. I refuse to do that.

Old Country Boy on March 19, 2014 at 1:29 PM

Old Country Boy on March 19, 2014 at 1:29 PM

We are not losing the battle. Look at any poll that touches the subject. But here you are effectively arguing that we should become evil in order to defeat them, rather than fighting them with facts.

Maybe you have not noticed, but we have turned the tables on them, and it did not require any evil actions such as those they propose and factually have used of any kind to do it. Yeah, they are still out there, and they are still fighting, but they have been routed and just have not figured it out yet. They are just living off the graft they already gained in the fight, but that graft is quickly being spent with few sources remaining to refill their pockets.

The vacuum of information has begun to be filled in. The unanswered lies are being faced. We never had to be evil to get here. We never had to do evil to get here.

astonerii on March 19, 2014 at 1:44 PM

Progressive Theology 101.

Do nothing that actually makes sense to progress mankind. Complain, whine, threaten, protest and generally scream in public about how anything that might actually RAISE THE STANDARD OF LIVING GLOBALLY is destroying the pristine earth.

Progress to a Progressive means going back to the caves, and seriously MAN becoming extinct and returning the earth to the roaches and other surviving species.

#ironymissed

PappyD61 on March 19, 2014 at 1:52 PM

Why are these nuts so opposed to carbon? As a carbon based life form I resent that.

crankyoldlady on March 19, 2014 at 11:19 AM

You should. They are after all anti-human and their ultimate goal is to greatly reduce or completely eliminate the human species.

Dr. Frank Enstine on March 19, 2014 at 1:58 PM

Astoneri-

False equivalence. Meanest doesn’t equate evil.

I distinctly remember the soldier’s prayer: Yea, though I walk through he valley of death, I will fear no evil. For I am the meanest SOB in the valley. These useful idiots are backed by the most evil people on the planet. Either they are too dumb or indoctrinated to know it or they do their stuff willingly. Do your best to fill their information voids, to fill out the narrative.

Our dear leader has already been whipped by every fuzzy wuzzy and cold war enemy on this planet. He has given away OUR internet. He has reduced our nuclear arsenal to its lowest point in decades, all while facing more and more nuclear enemies. He has effectively given away our space station. He is forcing his political generals and admirals to reduce our armed forces, get rid of our most effective weapons. I fear that by the time your way works it will be too late.

Old Country Boy on March 19, 2014 at 2:04 PM

Old Country Boy on March 19, 2014 at 2:04 PM

They will bring pressure wherever, whenever, whatever Putin and the Saudis controllers tell them to. It is obvious these jerks are being controlled by foreign interests. Maybe we should load all those environmentalists (preservationists) up in shipping containers and ship them to Russia (nee USSR and soon to return) and any islamist oil producing country. By the way, there is no mentalist in environmentalist. Either that, if we have the guts, trace and document their sources of money and if found to be foreign, try them for treason.

Old Country Boy on March 19, 2014 at 12:19 PM

Kidnap and ship them overseas, not evil?
Not a dimes worth a difference between how they look at us with evil in their hearts and how you look at them with evil in your heart.

astonerii on March 19, 2014 at 2:14 PM

Why are you so opposed to cheap energy for American citizens?

astonerii on March 19, 2014 at 11:21 AM

Why are you so opposed to capitalism and free enterprise?

You rabid isolationists crack me up.

Solaratov on March 19, 2014 at 2:14 PM

Why are you so opposed to capitalism and free enterprise?

You rabid isolationists crack me up.

Solaratov on March 19, 2014 at 2:14 PM

I am all for engaging the world. I am not all for increasing my energy bill and leaving my children and descendents energy poor in order to help out a Europe that refuses to drill any of its own energy.

The reason for opening up the exporting is to tie America to the high prices of energy in other parts of the world as it is tied to the high prices of oil around the world. It harms just about everyone that does not directly benefit from the specific exported fuel.

If you think this nation is currently run under capitalism and free enterprise you are pretty ignorant or benefiting from the lack of it.

astonerii on March 19, 2014 at 2:27 PM

astonerii on March 19, 2014 at 12:35 PM

With prices this low, we are NOT drilling much at all for natural gas.

Kermit on March 19, 2014 at 2:31 PM

With prices this low, we are NOT drilling much at all for natural gas.

Kermit on March 19, 2014 at 2:31 PM

Go look at the long term cost of natural gas. We are still higher than it should be.
We are obviously producing what is needed for our nation or the price would rise until that need is met.
With prices this low, companies have been given an incentive to increase their use of natural gas. Ford is building a CNG truck. Power generation plants are changing over to natural gas. More and more industries are switching over. Due to low cost energy.
As it continues, more and more industries that left the nation due to high cost energy will look to come back for the low cost energy.

The nation does better with low cost energy. If the energy is underpriced, then demand for it will increase in this nation until it is properly priced.

astonerii on March 19, 2014 at 2:36 PM

Be interesting to know what all these sicko greenies use for energy?

Wade on March 19, 2014 at 10:53 AM

Small children?

avagreen on March 19, 2014 at 6:14 PM

Russia aside, you really have to wonder how much of the funding of these “environmental” groups comes from places like OPEC and Russia itself?

It’s a matter of simple “Cui Bono.”

schmuck281 on March 19, 2014 at 10:05 PM