Natural-gas projects denied in California, let pass in Maryland

If liquefied natural gas is the beleaguered suitor, California is the popular girl who keeps turning down earnest proposals. Yet another LNG terminal, this one off the coast of Ventura County, is off to the bar to drown its sorrows after a state commission voted Monday to reject its environmental impact report. The project, proposed by energy giant BHP Billiton, was effectively killed by commissioners who raised concerns about emissions and cost-effectiveness. The decision was applauded by greens, LNG-hatin’ celebs, and some 900 citizens who showed up to the hearing. “This is the biggest decision on California’s energy future in decades,” says Mark Massara of the Sierra Club. Meanwhile, Maryland lawmakers ended their legislative session without voting to block an unpopular LNG project that’s headed for federal review. Opponents are “frustrated and outraged that something this important didn’t even receive the consideration of a full vote,” says one legislator, who would not, obviously, have passed gas.