Industries Environmental Documents
FERC Staff Issues the Final Environmental Impact Statement for the Calcasieu Pass LNG Project (Docket Nos. CP15-550-000 and CP15-551-000)
Issued: October 22, 2018
The staff of the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (Commission or FERC) has prepared a final environmental impact statement (EIS) for the Calcasieu Pass LNG Project (or Project).
The proposed Project would include a new liquefied natural gas (LNG) export terminal and 23.4 miles of 42-inch-diameter pipeline in Cameron Parish, Louisiana. The terminal would include the following facilities:
- liquefaction facilities;
- two full-containment LNG aboveground storage tanks, each with a usable capacity of approximately 200,000 cubic meters;
- a 720 megawatt electric generating plant;
- a marine terminal consisting of a turning basin and LNG carrier berths;
- LNG piping;
- transfer lines;
- loading facilities; and
- other infrastructure.
The pipeline would include the following facilities:
- one meter station;
- three mainline valves;
- one pipeline inspection/cleaning device launcher at the meter station; and
- one pipeline inspection/cleaning device receiver on the terminal site.
The EIS has been prepared in compliance with the requirements of the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA), the Council on Environmental Quality regulations for implementing NEPA (Title 40 of the Code of Federal Regulations [CFR], Parts 1500–1508), and FERC regulations implementing NEPA (18 CFR 380).
The conclusions and recommendations presented in the EIS are those of the FERC environmental staff. Input from the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, U.S. Coast Guard, U.S. Department of Transportation, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, and U.S. Department of Energy, as cooperating agencies, was considered during the development of our conclusions and recommendations; however, these agencies could develop their own conclusions and recommendations and would adopt the final EIS per 40 CFR 1506.3 (where applicable) if, after an independent review of the document, they conclude that their permitting requirements have been satisfied.
The FERC staff concludes that construction and operation of the Project would result in some adverse environmental impacts, but these impacts would be reduced to less-than-significant levels. This determination is based on a review of the information provided by Venture Global LNG, Inc. (Venture Global) and TransCameron Pipeline, LLC (TransCameron Pipeline) and further developed from data requests; field investigations; scoping; literature research; alternatives analyses; and contacts with the federal, state, and local agencies, Native American tribes, and other stakeholders. Although many factors were considered in this determination, the principal reasons are:
- The horizontal directional drill (HDD) method would be used to cross 14 waterbodies which would avoid direct impacts on these resources.
- Venture Global Calcasieu Pass and TransCameron Pipeline would mitigate wetland impacts associated with the construction and operation of the proposed terminal and the pipeline in accordance with the project-specific Compensatory Mitigation Plan/Beneficial Use of Dredge Material Plan (CMP/BUDM).
- The FERC staff would complete the process of complying with section 7 of the Endangered Species Act.
- The FERC staff has completed consultation under section 106 of the National Historic Preservation Act and implementing regulations at 36 CFR 800 prior and determined that no historic properties would be affected by the Project.
- Venture Global Calcasieu Pass and TransCameron Pipeline would comply with all applicable air and noise regulatory requirements during construction and operation of the Project.
- Venture Global Calcasieu Pass and TransCameron Pipeline would minimize impacts on environmental resources during construction and operation of the Project by implementing, as applicable, their HDD Contingency Plan; CMP/BUDM; and the Project-specific Upland Erosion Control, Revegetation, and Maintenance Plan and Wetland and Waterbody Construction and Mitigation Procedures.
- Venture Global Calcasieu Pass would install a 31.5-foot-high storm surge wall around the perimeter of the terminal to the north, east, and south and a 26-foot-high berm on the west perimeter.
- The design spill methodology reviewed by U.S. Department of Transportation for the terminal, the Letter of Recommendation issued by the U.S. Coast Guard for the LNG marine traffic in the Calcasieu River Ship Channel, and the regulatory requirements for the pipeline and terminal would avoid a significant increase in public safety risks.
- An environmental inspection program would be implemented to ensure compliance with the mitigation measures that become conditions of the FERC authorization.
In addition, we developed and recommended other site-specific mitigation measures that Venture Global and TransCameron Pipeline should implement to further reduce the environmental impacts that would otherwise result from construction of its project.
The FERC Commissioners will take into consideration the FERC staff’s recommendations when they make a decision on the Project.