LNG Terminal Debate Hits Long Beach Port

Sound Energy Solutions, a Mitsubishi subsidiary, is proposing to build an LNG terminal in the Port of Long Beach and three more off the Southern California coast. The company claims that the $400 million facility could provide 10 percent of California's natural gas needs.

Environmentalist support an LNG expert's claims that terrorists or an earthquake could turn the terminal's storage facilities into a huge fireball that could devastate the city of Long Beach.

LNG is not flammable while it is in liquid form. However, it can ignite when mixed with oxygen. Experts say that LNG fires generate so much heat that people up to a mile away could suffer severe burns. Therefore, it is urged that LNG terminals be built as far as 14 miles offshore.

Currently, energy companies have proposed more that 30 LNG terminals throughout the United States. LNG resources could save billions of dollars in gas prices.