Four years after setback, Broadwater’s L.I. Sound plan now officially dead

PETER BLASL FILE PHOTO | Former Governor David Paterson, surrounded by a crowd of Broadwater opponents, including a host of elected officials, announced the state's rejection of Broadwater's plan to moor a floating LNG terminal in Long Island Sound, at a press conference in April 2008 at Sunken Meadow State Park.

Broadwater Energy’s plan for a floating liquefied natural gas terminal in the Long Island Sound was put on life support in April 2008 when the state announced it found the plan to be inconsistent with the L.I. Sound Coastal Management Policy.

On Wednesday, Broadwater formally pulled the plug on itself.

The Houston-based energy company made its intentions known in a letter asking the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission to vacate permits it had granted for the project, which had been virtually dead for nearly four years.

Broadwater had planned to moor the 1,200-foot-long floating LNG terminal nine miles off the coast of Wading River. The plan, first announced in 2005, immediately drew criticism from community and environmental groups. Several Suffolk County towns and the county itself even brought legal actions challenging the plan.

Former Governor David Paterson, flanked by more than a dozen elected officials, acknowledged the widespread opposition of governments, environmental organizations and community groups, by saying Broadwater is “not what Long Island Sound needs” in his announcement of the state’s findings in 2008 at Sunken Meadow State Park. The project then suffered another major setback a year later, when the state’s rejection of Broadwater’s plan was upheld in a 39-page decision by then-U.S. Commerce Secretary Gary Locke.

Nearly three years later, Broadwater says it is backing out of its plan.

“Broadwater has not commenced construction of the pipeline or the LNG facility to which it was intended to connect,” Broadwater attorney Kenneth Wiseman wrote in  the letter to FERC.

“Broadwater has determined not to go forward with any aspect of the LNG project,” the letter continued. “Accordingly, it respectfully requests that the commission vacate the certificates issued.”

FERC had granted the permit approval just weeks before Mr. Paterson’s 2008 announcement.

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