TABLE 6-3 LNG Infrastructure and Safety Recorda

Infrastructure Type

Worldwide Numbers

U.S. Numbers

Expected Growth

Serious Incidents Since 1959



Tanker Ships


Not relevant

200 more worldwide by 2013











Storage Facilities



Not available




aThe data in this table are taken from Parfomak and Vann (2008).

bSix terminals have been approved and are under construction in the United States; another 15 have been approved, but construction has not yet begun.

cData on accidents, fatalities, and injuries are not separately reported for terminals and storage facilities. These numbers represent the worldwide sum since records are available.

dThese numbers reflect import and export terminals.

their Table 6-2. A report prepared for the U.S. Department of Energy by Sandia National Laboratories summarizes and assesses four of those studies to develop estimates of the damages of a large pool spill from a tanker over water. The report does not monetize damages but provides estimates of numerous end points of damage (for example, asphyxiation, cryogenic burns, and structural damage).

Based on its review, the Sandia report provides estimates of the effects of various small- and large-scale accidents and intentional damage. For example, the report provides estimates of the size of a pool fire from different sizes of holes of a tanker breach, the size of the pool, the distance of thermal hazards, and the burn time. This information could be combined with data on population density and on monetary damages of death, injury, and property loss to quantify this externality at least for specific locations. However, the committee did not attempt such quantification. Further, the small risk of these incidents suggested by the historical record implies that the magnitude of this externality relative to other energy-based externalities is likely to be small.

The LNG industry faces unlimited liability for damages from accidents. In fact, fines have been large in the case of a pipeline fire in Bellingham, Washington, in 1999 and in training violations at the Everett, Massachusetts, LNG terminal. These facts suggest that the risk of accidents and spills is internalized in the LNG industry. In addition, private insurance held by facility owners contributes to internalization of the externality.

Finally, LNG tankers and facilities face considerable regulatory oversight. The Coast Guard has responsibility (and bears the cost) for shipping

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