Company abandons LNG proposal for Astoria

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by Associated Press and KGW Staff

NWCN.com

Posted on May 5, 2010 at 8:27 AM

Updated Wednesday, May 5 at 8:52 AM

ASTORIA, Ore. -- An energy company is pulling the plug on a controversial proposal to build a liquified natural gas terminal near Astoria.

Northern Star Natural Gas blamed delays in the processing of state and federal permits. The company says the project would have created dozens of jobs and lowered energy prices.

NorthernStar sought the go-ahead to begin constructing the proposed LNG terminal 20 miles east of Astoria on the Columbia River.

The LNG terminal would import, store and process supercooled liquefied natural gas for movement through pipelines.

The state must know how the project would affect water flows in Clifton Channel and water temperatures in the Columbia River, said Alex Cyril, who oversees water quality permits for the state agency.

NorthernStar hoped to have the terminal in use by 2013.

Opponents criticize NorthernStar for wasting time and tax dollars by withholding information needed to complete the permit process.

Last April, the company, a subsidiary of the New York holding company Leucadia National Corp., renewed its sublease with the Port for a 30-year term. But in August the Port decided not to renew the underlying state land lease for a parallel 30 years. Instead, the agency extended its initial term with the state by two years, keeping two 30-year options in place.

Oregon LNG filed suit against the Port of Astoria claiming damages from a breach of contract if the Port doesn't renew the state lease.
 

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