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    CA Dept. of Energy Web Site Posts CA Dept. Fish & Game Graphics From LNG Legislative Briefing

    (March 12, 2004) -- Staff of the CA Dept. of Fish and Game delivered a legislative briefing on Feb. 24 to staff of an Assembly committee concerning Liquefied Natural Gas (LNG) facilities...which the CA Dept. of Energy has now posted on its web site (details and link below).

    Dept. of Fish and Game Assistant Deputy Administrator Bud Leland from the agency's Office of Spill Prevention and Response participated in the briefing...and Mr. Leland told that other Fish and Game staff from the agency's Marine division (which deals with little critters) also participated.

    A power point presentation was made...which the CA Energy Dept has posted on its web site (with scant explanation). We have excerpted portions of the graphics' text, and include a link to the full set of graphics below...with background information provided to us by Mr. Leland from Fish and Game.

    Mr. Leland said his portion of the briefing involved navigation safety...and from the standpoint of vessels, LNG issues were similar to those encountered elsewhere. A CA statute administered by the agency deals with oil spills...and the statute requires Harbor Safety Committees whose purview includes the movement of LNG over water.

    Mr. Leland said the power point graphics concerning wildlife were prepared by the agency's Marine Division...and indicate what he described as standard concerns involving offshore platforms and vessels anchoring:

    Among the graphics regarding offshore LNG facilities:

    Impacts with Offshore LNG facilities

    • Artificial Lighting/Impacts to Seabirds/Marine Mammal Interactions
    • Pipelines/Anchors and Impacts to Hard Substrate
    • Shore Landings of New Seafloor Pipelines
    • Use of Seawater for Production Operations
    • Contaminants and Potential Spills

    Another slide states:

    Artificial Lighting from Illuminated Offshore May Cause Disorientation in Nocturnal Seabirds

    • Leads to collisions with vessels and structures resulting in injury or death to the birds
    • Birds fall stunned and/or injured into the water, or on decks and platforms
    • Injured birds become easy targets for predation once it is daylight.

    Graphics dealing with onshore facilities contrast Long Beach ("Developed Harbor") with CalPine in Humboldt County (rural harbor):

    Developed Harbor (Long Beach/SES) [compared with rural harbor, CalPine]

    • Invasive species
    • Minor Dredging

    A slide showing a potential onshore Humboldt County LNG site says it has the potential for significant environmental impacts...but doesn't say this about the Port of LB site.

    He noted that in terms of oil spill threats, LNG poses less of a threat than crude oil or heavy petroleum because LNG is released, it evaporates (unless it reaches an ignition source, in which case it can burn).

    He said the CA Dept. of Fish and Game has not taken a position on whether onshore versus offshore facilities were preferable.

    To view the set of 15 Dept. of Fish and Game graphics posted by the CA Dept. of Energy on its web site, click: "Legislative Staff Briefing", Acrobat PDF of February 24, 2004, presentation by Bud Leland, California Department of Fish and Game. (PDF file, 15 pages, 870 kiloibytes).

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