California could have three or more facilities receiving liquefied natural gas (LNG) today, but for massive popular resistance to the prices and possible dangers they might have brought. If those plants had been built, the phenomenon of fracking would mean something very different than it now does.
Over the last 10 years, potential LNG sites were killed in locales as varied as Humboldt Bay near Eureka, north San Diego County, Santa Monica Bay, Ventura County and Long Beach.
As these were all proposed, Californians were told they faced the threat of acute natural gas shortages, even though the state’s total gas consumption remained steady even as population increased by about 3 million during the century’s first decade.
So it became clear that if there were to be a shortage, it probably would be the creation of the state Public Utilities Commission, which almost inexplicably instructed the state’s big utilities to give up about one-third of their longtime reserved quantities of natural gas coming from places like Texas and Oklahoma...