Mississippi town not enthusiastic about storing strategic petroleum
Richton, Miss., is the lucky town picked as the fifth storage site for the U.S. Strategic Petroleum Reserve. To create space to store strategic petroleum, the Department of Energy will drain 50 million gallons of water a day for five years from the Pascagoula River to dissolve underground salt caverns, pumping the resulting brine through likely-to-leak pipelines over fragile wetlands and dumping it into the Gulf of Mexico. (The DOE assures that this all will be done in an “environmentally friendly” manner.) In the face of public outcry, the DOE will hold a second round of public meetings next week; the first round was held shortly after Hurricane Katrina and 110 miles away from Richton, and for some reason had low attendance.