Position Statements from the Oregon Shores Board of Directors
January 13, 2008: LNG TERMINALS, SHIPS, AND PIPELINES
Oregon Shores opposes the siting of Liquefied Natural Gas (LNG) terminals on the Oregon Coast or the Columbia River, as well as the building of associated pipelines. We also oppose movement of LNG tankers across the Columbia bar.
LNG terminals in Oregon are all proposed for estuaries and rivers whose ecological health is paramount. These terminals would bring a higher level of industrialization to the estuarine and coastal environments than now exists. In addition, the very long pipelines associated with all three proposals will disrupt private farming operations, require major timber-cutting on public forestlands across the state, and potentially cross under estuaries and rivers, further damaging these fragile environments. Oregon Shores also supports the rights of landowners not to have large pipelines forced on them by LNG import facilities and pipeline companies.
The vast majority of natural gas from all these proposed sites in Coos County and Clatsop County will be flowing to California and other large markets. Oregon Shores is therefore opposed to the use of our coastal and inland environments to provide for this use through environments that are fragile and extremely valuable to fishermen, farmers, timberland owners and rural residents. In addition, much relevant research shows that LNG terminals and tankers pose grave hazards to surrounding communities due to potential terrorist activities and the possibility of spills and explosions. Health and safety laws require cessation of other marine activity in a substantial area around an LNG tanker, which will disrupt commercial and recreational fishing, and commercial shipping. This will likely have a detrimental effect on local commerce, depending on the number of tankers. It will especially affect fishing activities, which are the lifeblood of coastal communities in Oregon.
February 25, 2006: SHIP-BREAKING
Shipbreaking in China
Oregon Shores recognizes the importance of healthy coastal economies and encourages the development of traditional coastal industries in coastal communities. Oregon Shores could support dry dock ship-breaking if the appropriate protective measures for the environment and the workers were required, in place, and enforced. Unfortunately, wet ship-breaking would necessarily expose the bay, the tidewaters, and the local fishing industry to toxins and invasive species. Oregon Shores opposes wet ship-breaking on the Oregon coast.
For a dramatic explanation of the world-wide hazards of Ship-breaking, see the Greenpeace Shipbreaking site. See also our archive page, Shipbreaking in Yaquina Bay.
February 25, 2006: COAL BED METHANE EXTRACTION
Aerial photo of Methane Energy Corporation extraction site near Beaver Hill, just west of Highway 101 a few miles south of Coos Bay. Photo ©2006 by Alex and Darva Derr, taken 4/2/2006, used by permission.
Even using best practices, coal bed methane extraction results in fracture of the rock bed and the use of significant amounts of water. The fractures allow migration of the waste water and drilling mud injected into the ground for disposal. The significant water use can cause streams and wells to dry up and the quality of the water to be adversely affected. The danger to the fragile and economically critical tidewaters, rivers, forests, and salmon runs make coal bed methane extraction an inappropriate industry for the coastal areas. Oregon Shores opposes coal bed methane extraction on the Oregon coast.
For an excellent and objective explanation, see the Montana State University page on Coalbed Methane Extraction.
As of 3 March 2006, Methane Energy Corporation has 15 drilling permits in "Application" or "Permitted" status, in Coos County. All Oregon oil and gas drilling permits are listed by Oregon Department of Geology & Mineral Industries in Albany. We have prepared a topographic map showing the 8 sites of MEC's 15 active drilling permits in Coos County.
March, 2001: MARINE RESERVES
Very low productivity is one factor in classifying the copper rockfish (Sebastes caurinus) as vulnerable in Puget Sound.
©John G. Shedd Aquarium, Edward G. Lines, Jr.
Oregon Shores favors the establishment of a regional network of marine reserves and marine protected areas along the West Coast of North America in addition to other conservation measures. Oregon Shores will work towards the establishment of such a regional network and will strive to contribute to public education and understanding of the importance of marine biodiversity, marine habitat protection and sustainable fisheries and to the use of marine reserves as a tool in addressing these issues.
Position and Background paper prepared by Dr. Bayard H. McConnaughey for Oregon Shores, March 2001