Court Removes Hurdle |For Maryland Gas Plant

     RICHMOND, Va. (CN) – The 4th Circuit overturned a Baltimore County law banning energy companies from building a liquefied natural gas terminal in the county’s heavily industrialized coastal area in Chesapeake Bay.

     AES Sparrows Point LNG and its affiliate, Mid-Atlantic Express, sued the county, its executive and the zoning commissioner, claiming the Natural Gas Act pre-empts the county’s restrictive ban.
     A federal judge granted the county summary judgment on the basis that the Coastal Zone Management Act allows the state and Baltimore County to ban the gas plant at Sparrows Point.
     The appellate judges reversed and remanded, saying the county ban is not part of Maryland’s federally approved Coastal Zone Management Plan, and is thus pre-empted by the Natural Gas Act.

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