In a worst-case scenario, the fallout from an accident or a collision at BHP Billiton?s proposed floating liquefied natural gas terminal 22 kilometers off the coast near Oxnard would not reach the shore, according to a draft environmental impact statement released on November 3. However, an onshore pipeline accident, albeit unlikely, could cause serious harm to people and property. But details of the risk-assessment study addressing public safety issues?referred to in the draft report by the U.S. Coast Guard, the State Lands Commission, and the U.S. Marine Administration?remain secret. The assessment ?contains sensitive security information,? according to the agencies? joint report. Only federal, state, and local agencies and elected officials with security responsibilities and ?clearances? will have access to it. Computer modeling was used to calculate various scenarios and potential damage caused by a collision, accident, or attack because there have been ?few incidents? at LNG terminals from which to draw conclusions. Despite the lack of incidents, the draft report predicts the likelihood of an onshore pipeline explosion to be low because the new pipelines would ?incorporate design and operations improvement learned from past accidents.? Whether anyone would be injured or killed by an explosion near one of the new onshore pipelines built to move the exported gas to the Southern California Gas system would depend on many factors, including the nature and time of the accident and response time of firefighters. The LNG terminal proposed by BHP Billiton, which is based in Australia, would deliver 800 million cubic feet of gas per day. There would be two to three LNG shipments per week. The environmental report notes that the California Energy Commission expects natural gas demand to grow by 1 percent a year over the next decade; the state is expected to use 2.4 trillion cubic feet by 2013. The report lists as ?significant? the potential for the following scenarios:<ul><li> A release of flammable vapor at the floating LNG terminal because of an attack or vessel collision, the impacts of which would be wrought several kilometers offshore.<\/li> <li>Releases of gas from onshore pipelines because of accidents or earthquakes.<\/li> <li>Releases caused by fishing gear damaging underwater pipelines.<\/li> <li>BHP and SoCal Gas are expected to develop emergency plans in coordination with state and federal agencies to prevent terrorist threats.<\/li><\/ul>The Energy Commission will release official comments on the draft environmental analysis in early December, said David Maul, CEC manager of natural gas. He added that the agencies ?should be congratulated on getting this extensive, first-of-its-kind document out on time.?