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LUBA sides with Clatsop County in denial of permit for natural gas facility

Oregon’s Land Use Board of Appeals ruled in favor of Clatsop County’s denial of a permit for a liquefied natural gas pipeline there Wednesday, April 29, a conservation-focused advocacy group reported.

In October 2013, the Clatsop County Board of Commissioners denied Oregon LNG land use approval to construct a 41-mile-long high-pressure natural gas pipeline through the county, according to LUBA’s opinion on the matter.

The proposed pipeline would transmit natural gas most from Canada to a facility in Warrenton, where it would be liquefied and prepared for shipment overseas to Asian markets.

Oregon LNG maintains that it does not need the county’s approval to construct its project, but that the pipeline is part of a larger project requiring the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission’s approval.

Oregon LNG’s project proposal included a marine loading terminal with two large storage tanks and facilities to support ship berthing and cargo loading, according to the company.

One of the reasons for Clatsop County’s initial denial of the project was its proposed location in Category 2 shorelands, according to the legal opinion.

The county also determined that the pipeline was inconsistent and incompatible with existing uses in the areas it would affect.

Columbia Riverkeeper, a conservation and advocacy organization, applauded the appeals board’s decision to side with Clatsop County, saying the project “violates local laws designed to protect public safety and salmon.”

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