City and residents demand answers on LNG trucking

By Don Logana - bio | email

SAVANNAH, GA (WTOC) - Huge questions about safety and security are still at the center of the debate over trucking liquefied natural gas through Savannah.

Citizens have been vocal, and now, state lawmakers and city leaders are taking action of their own.

El Paso Energy and Southern LNG were hoping to have their petition to truck LNG approved by the Federal Energy Regulatory Commision by now. That did not happen.

The deadline has now been moved to early April, but Savannh City Hall and state senators  want answers now.

Despite chaos over the city manager search, lost in the shuffle was a unanimous resolution from Savannah City Council requesting El Paso answer all questions about safety and security  before a petition deicsion is made.

WTOC is told state legislators Lester Jackson and Mickey Stephens also are working on a resolution to go before the house and state senate asking the government to require the same answers prior to a petition decision.

Last month, WTOC told you about concerned residents forming a group called Citizens For a Safe Secure Savannah. The group claims to have asked El Paso for a meeting to answer questions, in public, but say they were denied.

Kent Harrington is part of the citizens group, and worked as an analyst for the CIA for 30 years. While he says he's not and expert on LNG, he is an expert on security, and so far El Paso's plan makes him, and others, feel anything but safe.

"At this point, El Paso has put off meetings with the city. They put off meetings with state legislators. I think it would be in the interest of El Paso to sit down now publicly with all parties present and answer questions now," Harrington said.

The plan and petition calls for the Elba Island operation to expand to include the capability of trucking five million gallons of LNG a day, using at least close to 60 trucks. The proposed route would take the trucks from Elba Island to President Street, where they would get on the Truman Parkway, exit at Derenne Avenue and travel down to I-516 to I-16 West.

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