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Friday, May 20, 2011 - 11:51am

Consultant: No Good Routes For LNG

Updated: 3 years ago.
El Paso Corporation imports Liquefied Natural Gas at this ocean terminal on the Savannah River. It goes through pipes to places around the Southeast. Company officials, however, also want to truck it -- through Savannah -- to potential customers the pipes don't reach. (photo El Paso Corporation)

A security consultant for the City of Savannah says, he has a safer route for proposed trucks a Liquefied Natural Gas importer wants to send on city streets.

But the LNG laden trucks won't satisfy critics whatever the route.

Houston-based El Paso Corporation has proposed sending up to 58 trucks a day from an import terminal on Elba Island through a Midtown Savannah neighborhood with hospitals and schools.

Consultant Ben Johnson says, based on traffic accidents, it would be better to route the trucks through downtown.

The Sierra Club's Steve Willis says, there is no way to get the hazardous material safely through the city.

"It's already crowded. It's right in the middle of the old part of town. It just seems to me like fairly obviously a bad idea," Willis says. "Why should we move everything in Savannah around to accommodate them? Why don't they just simply move their activities somewhere else?"

El Paso spokesman Bill Baerg says, his company stands by the proposed Midtown route.

"The DeRenne route is the safest of the three routes currently available." Baerg says. "We believe a fourth route may be equal to or slightly better from a safety standpoint when the Truman Parkway extension is completed. We continue to work with the City on routing issues and time of day restrictions."

Federal energy regulators are currently considering the trucking proposal.

The ocean terminal is hemmed in by rivers, marshes and population centers.

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