On the 7th of September, Chesapeake Climate Action Network (CCAN) brought their roadshow against turning the old Cove Point LNG gas import terminal into an export facility to Silver Spring. The large auditorium in the Silver Spring Civic Center was almost completely full. Bill McKibben addressed the event by video link-comparing the proposed fracked gas export terminal to no less than the Keystone XL tar sands pipeline.
A point driven home by the presentation was that if Dominion Resources is permitted to convert the terminal to an export facility, it will almost certainly lead to the approval of gas fracking in Maryland. In addition, it would lead to massive industrial construction in Calvert County and along the pipeline route needed to feed it. Aleady Dominion has filed a lawsuit against Myersville, MD for seeking to prevent a massive gas compressor station from being built close to a school, in the center of town,
If even one LNG export facility opens anywhere in the US, it will feed a massive boom in fracking by roughly tripling the market value of gas. Residental gas prices would go up, not down, and US manufacturing would shrink as the gas to run the factories was exported and the jobs thus exported as well.
CCAN used the most conservative EPA figure for how much “fugitive gas” escapes from fracking wells at 1.4%, reminding everyone that many suspect it is worse. Based on this figure, CCAN was able to show that with the increase in fracking the Cove Point terminal would provoke, plus methane being 28 times as powerful a greenhouse gas as CO2, the climate impact of the Cove Point terminal would equal or exceed that of the Keystone XL tar sands pipeline.
That being so, Dominion Resources should expect to be treated as “another Transcanada” and already this has begun. MD residents are packing halls wherever fracking or gas exports are discussed
In rural Calvert County, hundreds of people have turned out for town halls opposing the Cove Point project, and similar crowds in Western MD where fracking is being proposed but is still under moratorium.