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If FERC’s decision to waive an EIS for Sabine Pass stands as a precedent in handling other LNG export applications — including Freeport LNG’s — it could have profound implications for federal policy on fracking, not to mention climate change.Those energy policies are the purview of Deutch, 74, who joined the Cheniere board in 2006.

The DOE’s selective favor has provided Cheniere a distinct market advantage, rescuing it from a lingering cash crunch and setting the table for a spectacular run for the company’s stock — ticker symbol “LNG.” In August 2010, just before Cheniere announced plans to seek the DOE’s permission to export LNG, its stock traded at .41.

Craig Segall, a Sierra Club attorney, said federal regulators have turned a blind eye to the fracking boom’s potential threat to water and air quality.

As the DOE weighs whether to allow exports of up to 45 percent of current domestic gas production, it has so far deferred to FERC and “refused to disclose, or even acknowledge, the environmental consequences of its decisions.

Cheniere was the first to apply for the prized non-FTA export permit, but when other companies quickly followed suit, the DOE slapped a moratorium on approvals.

Then on May 17, the DOE ended its moratorium by granting Freeport LNG a provisional non-FTA export permit.

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