Washington, D.C. -- The Energy Department announced today that it has conditionally authorized the Freeport LNG Terminal on Quintara Island, Texas, to export domestically produced liquefied natural gas (LNG) to countries that do not have a Free Trade Agreement with the United States.
In response, Deb Nardone, director of the Sierra Club's Beyond Natural Gas campaign, issued the following statement:
"It is deeply disappointing that the Department of Energy (DOE) conditionally authorized exports from the Freeport liquefied natural gas export terminal in Texas. It's a bad deal all around: for public health, the environment, and America's working people. The economic study the DOE itself commissioned clearly states that LNG export will transfer wealth from wage earners to fossil fuel executives. LNG export is nothing by a giveaway to the dirty fuel industry, at the expense of every day Americans.
"Exporting LNG will lead to more drilling -- and more drilling means more fracking, more air and water pollution, and more climate fueled weather disasters like last year's record fires, droughts, and superstorms. In today's conditional authorization, DOE acknowledges that it has not yet considered any of these impacts, but that environmental effects must be considered before DOE can grant final approval.
"As we have shown, once environmental impacts are evaluated, it becomes clear that the additional fracking and gas production exports would induce is unacceptable. For the public good, natural gas needs to stay in the ground, and the administration needs to double down on clean energy like wind and solar that would protect us from the worst effects of climate change while putting Americans to work.
"The Sierra Club is closely monitoring all permits and approvals that the Freeport facility will require, and will take action as necessary."