Hearings on the proposed Jordan Cove LNG pipeline held by the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) were conducted this week. According to reporting, turnout in some locations, specifically Medford, topped 100 people within 30 minutes.
The hearings are part of a required public comment period on FERC’s 1,000 page environmental impact analysis, which lists 137 conditions Jordan Cove would need to meet in order to minimize the negative effects of the construction and operation of the pipeline.
Jordan Cove, a company owned by the Canadian corporation Pembina, is proposing a 230 mile natural gas pipeline across Klamath, Jackson, Douglas and Coos counties ending in a terminal facility near Coos Bay. The facility would liquefy and store the gas, preparing is for sale to Asia and other Pacific markets.
A group of landowners who have opposed Pembina for years, including Stacey McLoughlin of Douglas County and Deb Evans of Klamath County, are making allegations of harassment against the company. They claim that Pembina has engaged in “coercive and targeting of vulnerable and elderly landowners with threats of eminent domain have literally scared some people into signing.”
They also claim Jordan Cove’s self-published support numbers are inflated compared to county clerk records.
The plans for the pipeline have been in the works for years. It was proposed once during the Obama administration, but denied. According to reporting, it was resubmitted in 2017 under the “more industry-friendly Trump administration.”
A spokesperson for Jordan Cove confirmed that the company has stepped down spending on the pipeline project in response to a slower process of receiving permits. The FERC permit is a large step, but the company still needs to get approval from multiple state agencies, including Oregon’s Department of Environmental Quality which denied them a water quality certification in May.
By Ian MacRonald