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Searsport says ‘no’ to propane tank moratorium

SHARE Searsport says ‘no’ to propane tank moratorium

PORTLAND, Maine — Energy officials have long wanted to decrease reliance on heating oil in Maine, but efforts to bring other fuel sources into the state haven't always been met with open arms.

Mainers have resisted past efforts to build liquefied natural gas terminals along the coast.

But in Searsport, residents on Saturday voted 297 to 165 against a moratorium that would have slowed down or possibly derailed a proposal to build a 23-million gallon storage tank for propane brought to Maine by ship. Denver-based DCP Midstream will now move forward with the project.

Supporters say the tank will bring jobs, add to the local tax base, and stabilize and diversify Maine's energy supply.

Critics maintain the project is too big, raises traffic and environmental concerns, and will hurt the region's tourism-based economy.