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Commissioner Cheryl A. LaFleur Statement
July 16, 2019

Docket No. CP15-521-000 PDF


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Concurrence regarding Gulf LNG Liquefaction Company, L.L.C

Today’s order grants authorization to Gulf LNG Liquefaction Company, LLC, and Gulf LNG Energy, LLC (collectively Gulf LNG) pursuant to section 3 of the Natural Gas Act (NGA), 1 to site, construct and operate new facilities for the export of liquefied natural gas (LNG) at the existing import terminal in Jackson County, Mississippi (Gulf LNG Liquefaction Project). 2 The Commission also authorizes Gulf LNG Pipeline, LLC, pursuant to section 7 of the NGA, 3 to modify the existing pipeline to service to the export terminal. For the reasons discussed below, I concur.

As in prior LNG orders, I appreciate that the Commission has disclosed the direct GHG emissions of the Gulf LNG Liquefaction Project and has provided important context by comparing them to the national GHG emissions inventory. 4 In prior concurrences, I noted my concerns about the Commission’s failure to assess the significance of the GHG emissions. 5 I continue to have the same concerns in this case and believe that the Commission could develop a framework for assessing significance, if it chose to do so. I expect that the court will continue to require the Commission to expand its climate analysis. 6

Given my review of the record, I find the proposed modification of the Gulf LNG Liquefaction Project from import to export is not inconsistent with the public interest. 7

For these reasons, I respectfully concur.






                                               

    1 15 U.S.C. § 717b (2012).
    2 Gulf LNG Liquefaction Company, LLC. 168 FERC ¶ 61,020 (2019) (Certificate Order).  In 2007, the Commission, under section 3 of the NGA, authorized Gulf LNG Energy, LLC to site, construct, and operate an LNG important terminal.  Gulf LNG Energy, LLC, 118 FERC ¶ 61,128 (2007).
    3 15 U.S.C. § 717f(c) (2012).
    4 Certificate Order, 168 FERC ¶ 61,020 at P 54; Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) at Tables 4.11 1-3 (existing terminal), 4.11 1-4 (terminal expansion), and 4.11 1-9 (LNG carrier and support vessel).  The EIS also discloses the direct GHG emissions from the construction of the project.  EIS at Tables 4.11 1-5, 4.11 1-6, and 4.11 1-7.  See Sierra Club v. FERC, 867 F.3d 1357, 1374 (D.C. Cir. 2017) (Sabal Trail) (“Quantification would permit the agency to compare the emissions from this project to emissions from other projects, to total emissions from the state or the region, or to regional or national emissions-control goals.”).
    5 See, e.g, Driftwood LNG LLC, 167 FERC ¶ 61,054 (2019) (LaFleur, Comm’r, concurring).
    6 E.g., Sabal Trail, 867 F.3d 1357.  See also Birckhead v. FERC, 925 F.3d 510 (D.C. Cir. 2019).
    7 With regard to the NEPA cumulative impacts analysis, there are no FERC jurisdictional projects within the cumulative impacts air region.
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