What is the “Fields Point Liquefaction Project”?
Fields Point LNG (Liquefied Natural Gas) liquefaction facility is one of National Grid’s latest attempts to keep Rhode Island hooked on fossil fuel infrastructure and perpetuate a cycle of environmental racism on the South Side of Providence. They are proposing to bring in fracked gas from the marcellus shale in Pennsylvania through the “Algonquin” Incremental Market pipeline (that goes underneath the Narragansett Bay) to the Port of Providence to be liquefied and then transported out of RI by truck to nearby states.
What is LNG/Liquefied Natural Gas?
LNG or Liquefied Natural Gas is gas that is cooled to extremely low temperatures (-260°F liquid methane, 600X more condensed than as a gas) – through a process called liquefaction to turn it into liquid. Once the gas is in liquid form – companies can store much more of it and ship it to other locations.
What are the biggest problems with this project?
- High cost. We (ratepayers) will be paying the $180 million+ cost for the next 20 years.
- It is unnecessary and not needed. Even if we did need more LNG (and we don’t), this project doesn’t increase the supply the LNG available to us. It’s just for corporate profits.
- It is dangerous. If LNG spills it expands 600X, becoming flammable and possibly explosive. Right next to the facility is a chemical plant, the highest risk facility in Rhode Island with a danger zone of 14 miles. It is close to the hospitals, and on the wrong side of the hurricane barrier where it could be hit and flooded by a hurricane storm surge.
- It causes climate change. Natural gas extracted by fracking is worse for the climate than coal. Building this will lock RI into using more fracked gas for at least 20 years, instead of investing in weatherization and energy efficiency to reduce our energy use.
- It is on a toxic site. The soil and groundwater at the site is contaminated from over 100 years of pollution. It is know to have dangerous levels of hazardous and/or cancer causing materials including lead, cyanide, arsenic, benzene, toluene, VOCs, PAHs, and others.
- It is environmental racism. There are many industrial facilities in Providence along Allens Ave in Southside, polluting a low-income community of color. This project would increase pollution and cause more harm to a community that is already more at risk for being exposed to toxins linked to developmental issues, respiratory disease, and cancer.