Governor Brown today released the following statement about the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission's (FERC) approval of the Jordan Cove and Pacific Connector Gas Pipeline and marine export terminal project, which has not completed its state permitting processes:
“Given a national and state emergency, in which the federal government and its agencies are unable to fulfill their basic responsibility to keep citizens safe, it is stunning that the FERC moved forward on this decision today, approving the Jordan Cove project and Pacific Connector Gas Pipeline.
“I’ve long been clear that my position as Governor has been to ensure the neutrality and fairness of state permitting processes as part of my commitment to uphold the requirements of Oregon law. I’ve received enormous criticism for this position, but I want to be clear: defending these processes defends everyone’s right to be heard, from a tradesperson hoping to work on the project, to a landholder along the pipeline route, to citizens concerned about the ramifications of this project on our climate or in the event of an earthquake or tsunami on the coast.
“As the FERC Chair stated earlier today, it is now incumbent on the company to secure all state permits. Currently, this project does not have a green light from state agencies: they were denied a clean water permit by the Department of Environmental Quality; they withdrew their permit applications to the Department of State Lands; and they received an objection from DLCD stating their project is inconsistent with the Coastal Zone Management Act. Currently, several key permits do not have active applications.
“I want to reiterate that I will not stand for any attempt to ignore Oregon’s authority to protect public safety, health, and the environment. I have asked the state’s lawyers to consider all appropriate legal action to assure that Oregon permitting processes will be followed. And let me be clear to the concerned citizens of Southwest Oregon: until this project has received every single required permit from state and local agencies, I will use every available tool to prevent the company from taking early action on condemning private property or clearing land.”