The truth is always in the middle – at least according to the revised draft Environment Impact Report for the offshore liquid natural gas (LNG) facility proposed near Oxnard. The document – released by the California State Lands Commission last week – predicted a worst-case scenario accident could result in a massive “vapor cloud of fire” that could travel as many as seven-and-one-half miles, leaving it six miles from shore. When the plan was proposed about three years ago, it was believed that a potential fireball would extend no more than one mile. Opponents have long included the destructive fireball possibility on an extensive laundry list of potential environmental impacts of the LNG facility, including air pollution. But BHP Billiton – the masterminds of the Cabrillo Port project – maintain the facility can be run safely and efficiently. The $500 million project is one of five LNG facilities proposed for the California coast; despite being heavily opposed by the Cities of Oxnard and Malibu, it has made the most headway in the approval process.
GREAT BALLS OF FIRE:
Originally published 12:00 p.m., April 27, 2006
Updated 5:13 p.m., May 18, 2006
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