On Thursday, members of the Senate Natural Resources Committee voted against a bill that would have limited the expansion of natural gas storage caverns under Jefferson Island. It was a major setback for the citizens group Save Lake Peigneur. Sen. Troy Hebert, SB 194's author, told The Daily Iberian that the committee is "very friendly" with the oil industry. He added, "That lake has been poked more times than my grandmother’s pincushion."
The group AGL Resources intends to add two caverns to the existing facility. Save Lake Peigneur Vice President Nara Crowley told The Daily Ibierian, "The bottom line is that the lobbyists and the company, the people with the money, they could afford to sway the vote."
The bill sought to protect "the ground water of Lake Peigneur by prohibiting the development, expansion, or conversion of certain storage caverns in the Jefferson Island salt dome." The vote against the bill was 4 to 3.