A plan to build a liquefied natural gas (LNG) transfer station off the coasts of Long Island and New Jersey was broadly criticized during a public hearing, even though the developer said the project would give residents access to more natural gas for heating, CBS New York reported.
The developer, Liberty Natural Gas, says the project, to be located 17 miles off Jones Beach and 24 miles off Long Branch, N.J., will bring jobs and reduce energy bills. “We will bring down natural gas prices. We will help convert from fuel oil to natural gas because no one can afford to pay what you have to pay in January, February and March,” Liberty Natural CEO Roger Whelan said.
Critics who spoke at the hearing said the project is too close to shore and too dangerous. “I think they’re in over their heads,” said Larry Moriarty of the Surfrider Foundation. “We all live here, know what one big wave can change our lives forever. There is no way our ocean should be for sale.”
The $300 million plan was debated at length Tuesday night at the Alegria Hotel in Long Beach, CBS reported. It was Long Island’s only public hearing on the divisive issue.
“The bottom line is that we need certainty and the only thing I’m certain of is that this project is no good,” New York State Assemblyman Phil Goldfeder said.
New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie vetoed the first version of the plan back in 2010, but Liberty Gas says it has redesigned. The new plan is completely off shore and little if anything will be visible from land. Liquefied natural gas would be shipped from the Caribbean and then turned into gas at an underwater docking station, pumped through buoys into two pipelines that serve Long Island and New York City.
Critics predict it will evolve into a large export facility. “The potential here can shut down shipping lanes, overtax first responders and really affect the commerce of the state, not to mention the citizens,” said Sean Dixon of Clean Ocean Action.
To read the CBS article, click here.