Wednesday, November 15, 2006

Ventura County Lands A Jab On LNG Project.

Today the Ventura County Air Pollution Control District ruled that Cabrillo Port will have to comply with onshore air quality restrictions despite the fact that it is 14 miles out in the ocean. Thanks to an anonymous poster on this blog, we learned the other day that, from a statutory perspective that isn't as absurd as it may sound (Thanks again, Anonymous, for the primer on DWPA).

This likely will mean several million dollars in additional cost for BHP Billiton, the company developing the project, but when you're talking about an $800 million deal to begin with, how much of a setback is that really?

Billiton pretty much shrugged off the news as the company is confident that Cabrillo Port is already an environmental net positive:
Company officials said the terminal is good for the environment and could help solve California's energy needs. They said the emission controls they propose exceed industry standards and would improve air quality in the Los Angeles region as well as the Central Coast.

"When we are constructed and operating, Cabrillo Port will improve the air quality and comply with the Clean Air Act in an environmentally sound manner," said Kathi Hamm, a Billiton spokeswoman

Hardly a death blow, but the ruling is still significant and the fight will go on.

Panel: LNG terminal should comply with stricter air quality rules [AP]