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COOS BAY - Oregon Department of State Lands Director Vicki Walker has approved extending the deadline for the removal-fill permit decision on the Jordan Cove LNG application to Jan. 31, 2020.

Applicant Jordan Cove last week requested an extension on the removal-fill permit decision. Prior to the extension, DSL was expected to make a decision on the permit this Friday.

With the extended time, Jordan Cove LNG agreed to submit by Oct. 20 a second set of responses to questions surrounding substantive and technical issues that are not yet resolved. The first set of responses was sent to DSL on Sept. 4.

This specific permit is for dredging out four points of Coos Bay’s navigational channel to allow for the safer passage of large tanker ships that would be moving in and out of the bay should the LNG export terminal be approved. Along with the application for the permit, Jordan Cove was required to provide DSL with a mitigation plan for the habitats that dredging would disturb.

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Any project in Oregon that proposes putting material into or taking material out of waters and wetlands is required to receive a removal-fill permit from DSL in order to mitigate any impacts to waters and wetlands associated with that project.

This is the second extension DSL has granted the applicant, with the first being back in early March. In January, DSL held a series of public hearings in each of the counties that would be impacted by the project. The Coos County hearing in January at The Mill Casino-Hotel saw more than 400 people in attendance.

During the comment period, DSL has reported they received somewhere between 49,000 and 57,000 comments.

In May, Jordan Cove told The World newspaper they had submitted over 1,600 pages of response to questions and comments from DSL and the public regarding its fill removal permit. These responses from the company are part of the final technical review step, which includes time for the applicant to address relevant comments and unresolved technical issues.

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Nicholas A. Johnson can be reached at 541-266-6049, or by email at nicholas.johnson@theworldlink.com.