A coalition of clean-energy and human rights organizations pressed their case promoting energy conservation and renewable power to fend off growing state dependence on imported energy supplies if proposed liquefied natural gas terminal projects go forward. This week, the coalition?known as Ratepayers for Affordable Clean Energy (RACE)?held a blitz of press conferences and meetings with local elected officials and community leaders from Ensenada, Mexico, to Ventura in Southern California to seek support for alternatives to LNG. The group also renewed its call for the California Public Utilities Commission to hold evidentiary hearings on the need for foreign gas. Projections of future gas shortages advanced by Sempra Energy and other LNG proponents give short shrift to the potential for conservation and renewable resources to meet the state?s future energy needs, said Bill Powers, chair of the Border Power Plant Working Group. On February 16, the coalition held a rally outside the Port of Long Beach headquarters to protest construction of an LNG terminal by Mitsubishi Industries subsidiary Sound Energy Solutions. ?LNG is the 21st-century equivalent of snake oil,? Rory Cox, Pacific Environment spokesperson, said. As members of the coalition spoke, a few armed security guards looked on and a parade of truckers driving by from the port honked in support of the LNG protesters. The San Diego press conference followed a briefing for Mexican media on Monday in Ensenada. Three LNG terminals are in various stages of development along the Baja California coast. Indonesian John Rumbiak, who handles foreign affairs for the West Papua Institute, said that BP?s plan to develop the Tangguh gas field on the island and sell gas to Sempra could perpetuate the repression of indigenous people by the Indonesian military. Rumbiak?s concern echoes public statements last year, including from former senior vice-president of BP Indonesia John O?Reilly, insisting the company ensure the protection of human rights. The press blitz comes as a coalition of businesses in favor of LNG is preparing to launch a major pro-LNG public relations campaign being organized by Mike Murphy and his firm DC Navigators. Murphy was a political strategist for Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger in his 2003 gubernatorial campaign.