A train leaves Spokane, Wash., a funnel for rail traffic to the Pacific Coast Energy firms want to move more raw materials through the region.
Photo credit: Rajah Bose for The New York Times.
“State officials said Wednesday they are revoking permits for two planned oil train terminals in southwest Washington after deciding the projects should face more environmental scrutiny.
The state Shorelines Hearings Board issued a letter Wednesday indicating it will invalidate permits for Westway Terminal Co. and Imperium Terminal Services, which want to build oil shipping terminals at the Port of Grays Harbor that could store up to 1.5 million barrels of crude, primarily from North Dakota.
The city of Hoquiam issued the permits last spring, after determining in conjunction with the state Ecology Department that the proposals posed minimal threat to the environment. The letter called that determination “clearly erroneous,” noting that the city and state officials failed to consider the cumulative environmental impacts of having the two terminals running along with a third terminal planned nearby.
The board also noted the effects of increased train and vessel traffic need to be considered, as does the damage that could be posed by an oil spill or an earthquake.”
“Opponents note that while the construction and operation of oil pipelines is subject to strict state, federal and local environmental and safety reviews, there are no such overarching reviews of crude-by-rail proposals, though the effects of derailments and oil spills can be devastating.”
“‘A hundred jobs to our community is huge’ she said. ‘I don’t know if you’ve seen the state unemployment statistics, but Grays Harbor County is always No. 1,'” quoting Gen Johnson oft he AP.
Do we want to be known for destroying the environment for jobs or a fast buck, as have other states such as North Dakota, Alaska, West Virginia, having paid the price for ecological disasters.
Ask the coal mine workers and their families of Western Pennsylvania & Eastern Kentucky!