FERC issues FEIS for Maine’s Downeast LNG project

The US Federal Energy Regulatory Commission has issued its final environmental impact statement (FEIS) for the Downeast LNG project in Washington County, Maine, proposed by Downeast LNG Inc. and Downeast Pipeline LLC.

FERC concluded that approval of the proposed project would ensure that most impacts in the project area would be avoided or reduced to less than significant levels provided that Downeast implements the mitigation measures recommended in the FEIS.

The commission explained that construction and operation of the project would primarily result in temporary and short-term environmental impacts, and that some long-term and permanent environmental impacts would occur.

FERC said it will take recommendations for the project into consideration when it makes a decision.

The project would provide 500 MMcfd of gas to New England. The proposed facilities notably include a marine terminal with a 3,862-ft pier for LNG vessels ranging 70,000-165,000 cu m in capacity and two 160,000-cu-m full-containment LNG storage tanks.

A supplemental EIS for the project was released in April 2013 (OGJ Online, Apr. 2, 2013). A draft EIS was issued 4 years prior, noting, as with the FEIS, that the US Coast Guard’s letter of recommendation that the Passamaquoddy Bay waterway was suitable for the type and frequency of marine traffic that would be associated with the project if risk mitigation recommendations outlined in the Water Suitability Report are fully implemented (OGJ Online, May 18, 2009).

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