Residents protest Md. liquid natural gas facility

WASHINGTON (WUSA 9) -- It could have an impact on everything from global energy economics, to the air we breath, to the front yards of a local neighborhood. Hundreds protested Sunday at the Capitol ahead of an expected September decision on a liquid natural gas (LNG) export facility in Lusby, Maryland. It's an issue that has made a lot of people "Fracking" mad.

They are opposing Dominion Resources' proposal to use the Cove Point, Maryland LNG facility to export the fuel overseas. Dominion Resources promotes the $3.8 billion upgrade as a way to bring thousands of jobs and 40 to 45 million dollars into the local economy,

But environmentalists are worried that upgraded facility will encourage and increase the use of "Fracking," a controversial process to bring natural gas from underneath shale deposits, across the east coast.

Mike Tidwell, from the Chesapeake Climate Action Network says that "Fracking" would not only impact communities in the Appalachian mountains of Eastern Pennsylvania and Western Maryland, but could also lead to oil drilling under shale deposits across the east coast including DC's immediate suburbs.

A decision from the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission could come in September, and Cove Point could be among the first LNG facilities to export the fuel from the United States to Asia.

People who live near the facility in Lusby say they are worried about emissions from the plant and a possible accident that could lead to an explosion. Rachel Heinhorst who lives right across the street says she and her family will now have to live with a high sound wall, and increased truck traffic interrupting what she says has been a peaceful quiet way of life.

If FERC approves Dominion's plans, the Cove Point facility could be exporting Liquid Natural gas by 2017.


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