A coastal Oregon county will vote May 16 on a ballot measure to block a proposed natural gas terminal, the latest in a series of efforts to thwart energy projects across the Pacific Northwest.
The measure would ban transport of fossil fuels not intended for local use through Coos County, located about 200 miles south of Portland.
Backers have called the initiative a response to a $7.6 billion proposal by Calgary-based Veresen Inc., to build a facility in the county where natural gas would be liquefied and transferred to tanker ships for sale abroad. They have cast the measure as a local refusal to contribute to global warming.
Should the ban pass, it could bring the county into conflict with the administration of President Donald Trump. Gary Cohn, head of the National Energy Council, in April singled out the Veresen project as a priority for the administration.
The Coos County initiative is part of regional resistance in the Northwest to fossil fuel projects that has seen the blockage of several major export facilities.
Last year, the Lummi Nation Native American tribe and environmental groups blocked an export terminal in Northwest Washington state that would have moved Montana and Wyoming coal to markets in Asia.