Quantcast
Environmental News for a Healthier Planet and Life

Help Support EcoWatch

DOE Approves LNG Exports from Dominion Cove Point to Non-FTA Countries

Fracking
DOE Approves LNG Exports from Dominion Cove Point to Non-FTA Countries

EcoWatch

By Laura Beans

The Department of Energy (DOE) announced yesterday it has conditionally authorized Dominion Cove Point LNG to export domestically produced liquefied natural gas (LNG) over seas to countries that do not have a Free Trade Agreement with the U.S.

The conditional approval from the DOE is pending environmental review and final regulatory approval, but would allow the facility to potentially export up 0.77 billion cubic feet of natural gas a day.

Dominion Cove's authorization from the DOE to export from the Lusby, MD, terminal will essentially mean more fracking for natural gas in states like Pennsylvania, Ohio and West Virginia that lie above the coveted Marcellus Shale basin.

Dominion’s Cove Point LNG import facility, located on the shores of the Chesapeake Bay in Lusby, Maryland. Image courtesy of Dominion

"Exporting LNG to foreign buyers will lock us into decades-long contracts, which in turn will lead to more drilling—and that means more fracking, more air and water pollution, and more climate-fueled weather disasters like record fires, droughts, and superstorms like last year's Sandy," said Deb Nardone, director of the Sierra Club’s Beyond Natural Gas Campaign. "And all this when we know that the dangers of natural gas will only become more clear as we learn more about its effects on health and the climate."

According to LNG Global, Dominion Cove Point owns not only the export station but the pipeline infrastructure that will be used to deliver fracked gas to the terminal. The pipeline will be fed through the interstate pipeline grid, "thereby allowing gas to be sourced broadly," Dominion stated in their application.

"Their pipeline system provides access to the Appalachian natural gas supply (Marcellus Shale), as well as connections to supplies from the Gulf of Mexico area, the mid-continent, the Rockies and Canada," LNG Global explained.

Dominion Cove Point is the fourth export terminal approved by the DOE. The others, Sabine Pass Liquefaction, LLC (Cheniere Energy); Freeport LNG Expansion, L.P. and FLNG Liquefaction, LLC; and Lake Charles Exports, LLC lie along the Gulf coast.

"It's a bad deal all around: for public health, the environment and America's working people," continued Nardone. "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 but a giveaway to the dirty fossil fuel industry, at the expense of everyday Americans."

Visit EcoWatch’s LNG and FRACKING pages for more related news on this topic.

——–

EcoWatch Daily Newsletter

This image of the Santa Monica Mountains in California shows how a north-facing slope (left) can be covered in white-blooming hoaryleaf ceanothus (Ceanothus crassifolius), while the south-facing slope (right) is much less sparsely covered in a completely different plant. Noah Elhardt / Wikimedia Commons / CC by 2.5

By Mark Mancini

If weather is your mood, climate is your personality. That's an analogy some scientists use to help explain the difference between two words people often get mixed up.

Read More Show Less
Flames from the Lake Fire burn on a hillside near a fire truck and other vehicles on Aug. 12, 2020 in Lake Hughes, California. Mario Tama / Getty Images

An "explosive" wildfire ignited in Los Angeles county Wednesday, growing to 10,000 acres in a little less than three hours.

Read More Show Less
Although heat waves rarely get the attention that hurricanes do, they kill far more people per year in the U.S. and abroad. greenaperture / Getty Images

By Jeff Berardelli

Note: This story was originally published on August 6, 2020

If asked to recall a hurricane, odds are you'd immediately invoke memorable names like Sandy, Katrina or Harvey. You'd probably even remember something specific about the impact of the storm. But if asked to recall a heat wave, a vague recollection that it was hot during your last summer vacation may be about as specific as you can get.

Read More Show Less

A film by Felix Nuhr.

Thailand has a total population of 5,000 elephants. But of that number, 3,000 live in captivity, carrying tourists on their backs and offering photo opportunities made for social media.

Read More Show Less
Scientists have found a way to use bricks as batteries, meaning that buildings may one day be used to store and generate power. Public Domain Pictures

One of the challenges of renewable power is how to store clean energy from the sun, wind and geothermal sources. Now, a new study and advances in nanotechnology have found a method that may relieve the burden on supercapacitor storage. This method turns bricks into batteries, meaning that buildings themselves may one day be used to store and generate power, Science Times reported.

Bricks are a preferred building tool for their durability and resilience against heat and frost since they do not shrink, expand or warp in a way that compromises infrastructure. They are also reusable. What was unknown, until now, is that they can be altered to store electrical energy, according to a new study published in Nature Communications.

The scientists behind the study figured out a way to modify bricks in order to use their iconic red hue, which comes from hematite, an iron oxide, to store enough electricity to power devices, Gizmodo reported. To do that, the researchers filled bricks' pores with a nanofiber made from a conducting plastic that can store an electrical charge.

The first bricks they modified stored enough of a charge to power a small light. They can be charged in just 13 minutes and hold 10,000 charges, but the challenge is getting them to hold a much larger charge, making the technology a distant proposition.

If the capacity can be increased, researchers believe bricks can be used as a cheap alternative to lithium ion batteries — the same batteries used in laptops, phones and tablets.

The first power bricks are only one percent of a lithium-ion battery, but storage capacity can be increased tenfold by adding materials like metal oxides, Julio D'Arcy, a researcher at Washington University in St. Louis, Missouri, who contributed to the paper and was part of the research team, told The Guardian. But only when the storage capacity is scaled up would bricks become commercially viable.

"A solar cell on the roof of your house has to store electricity somewhere and typically we use batteries," D'Arcy told The Guardian. "What we have done is provide a new 'food-for-thought' option, but we're not there yet.

"If [that can happen], this technology is way cheaper than lithium ion batteries," D'Arcy added. "It would be a different world and you would not hear the words 'lithium ion battery' again."

Aerial view of the Smithsonian Tropical Research Institute in Gamboa, Panama, where a new soil study was held, on Sept. 11, 2019. LUIS ACOSTA / AFP via Getty Images

One of the concerns about a warming planet is the feedback loop that will emerge. That is, as the planet warms, it will melt permafrost, which will release trapped carbon and lead to more warming and more melting. Now, a new study has shown that the feedback loop won't only happen in the nether regions of the north and south, but in the tropics as well, according to a new paper in Nature.

Read More Show Less

Trending

Marion County Sheriff Billy Woods speaks during a press conference after a shooting at Forest High School on April 20, 2018 in Ocala, Florida. Gerardo Mora / Getty Images

By Jessica Corbett

A sheriff in Florida is under fire for deciding Tuesday to ban his deputies from wearing face masks while on the job—ignoring the advice of public health experts about the safety measures that everyone should take during the coronavirus pandemic as well as the rising Covid-19 death toll in his county and state.

Read More Show Less