Federal Court Rejects Permits for Kalama Methanol Refinery
Nov. 23, 2020 (Tacoma, Wash.)—Today, a federal district court vacated the federal permits required for the Kalama Methanol Refinery, sending the proposed project back to the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (Corps) for a full, transparent environmental review. The Court found the Corps had failed to consider the cumulative impact of greenhouse gas emissions caused by the proposal and ignored the new regional pipeline the project would require. The Court also found that the Corps illegally failed to consider the methanol refinery’s costs to the public—even while the Corps relied on its purported benefits. Due to multiple failures, the Court invalidated federal Clean Water Act permits for the methanol refinery.
methanol refinery fseis has been released
The Final Supplemental Environmental Impact Statement has been released and it doesn’t appear to address any of the concerns regarding the proposed Kalama Methanol refinery.
These numbers don't make sense
the FEIS claims that the absolute maximum annual operations emissions of CO2 would be 975,000 tonnes while the Methanol Institute has stated that the best efficiency that methanol refineries have been able to achieve is .54 tonnes of CO2 per tonne of methanol produced. Since NWIW proposes to produce 3,650,000 tonnes of methanol per year, the resulting CO2 emissions would seem to be more like 1,971,000 tonnes of CO2 per year, more than double what is stated in the FEIS.
Still think NWIW will be hiring locally?
It appears that Pan-Pacific Corp, which is believed to be Northwest Innovation Works’ parent company has applied for H1B visas in order to hire employees from outside the US. Therefore the expectation that the Methanol refinery would be a source of good jobs for local workers may not be realistic.
Huge Turnabout: Gov. Inslee Speaks out against methanol refinery in Kalama
As reported in the Tacoma News Tribune: Gov. Jay Inslee has spoken out against the methanol production facility in Kalama.
“I cannot in good conscience support continued construction of a liquefied natural gas plant in Tacoma or a methanol production facility in Kalama. In the early days of both projects, I said they could help reduce greenhouse gas emissions as we transition to cleaner energy sources, but I am no longer convinced that locking in these multi-decadal infrastructure projects are sufficient to accomplishing what’s necessary.”, said the Govenor following a bill signing Wednesday banning hydraulic fracking for oil and natural gas within Washington state.
Breaking News: Port of Kalama passes nwiw lease amendment
The Port of Kalama commissioners, disregarding the impassioned pleas of several concerned area residents, unanimously passed and amendment to the NWIW port lease that ostensibly prohibits NWIW from using the methanol exported to China for fuel, but does anyone really believe that this amendment can be enforced against a company controlled by a foreign power?
This amendment appears to be a “run for cover” after the story (see adjacent panel) broke that showed evidence that NWIW does indeed intend to use the methanol exported from the proposed Kalama ethanol refinery for fuel.
Bombshell report: NWIW lied about their methanol refinery
OPB broke a huge story about Northwest Innovation Works’ (NWIW) proposal to build the world’s largest gas-to-methanol refinery in Kalama, WA. Documents obtained by Columbia Riverkeeper demonstrate that NWIW mislead regulators and the public about the purpose of the methanol project.
NWIW repeatedly claimed that methanol produced at the facility would only be used as a feedstock for plastics. But in a 2018 PowerPoint presentation to potential investors, NWIW clearly indicates that Kalama’s methanol would primarily be burned as fuel in China’s cars, trucks, buses, ships, and factories. Burning methanol for fuel is bad for our climate. NWIW’s bait-and switch undermines the self-serving supplemental Environmental Impact Statement that NWIW released in late 2018.
Plastic Rain !?
Theguardian.com has reported that researchers in the Colorado Rockies have discovered “multicolored microscopic plastic fibers” present in rainwater. This discovery indicates that micro-plastics are not only present in the water we drink and the food we eat, but also in the air we breath.
And NWIW proposes (supposedly) that they should make more of it to “help save the environment”.
Breaking News: State Representative is on the NWIW payroll
According to an article appearing in the June 3rd edition of the Seattle Times, it seems that State Rep. Richard DeBolt who has been has been working to push the Kalama Methanol Refinery project through the Dept. of Ecology permitting process has also been drawing a 6 figure ($120,000) salary from NWIW.
While, apparently, it is “perfectly legal” in the State of Washington for a state legislator to hold a second job, in this case would it be considered “perfectly ethical”?
Port of Vancouver votes against future fossil fuel projects
The Port of Kalama commissioners might take note of the stand taken by the Port of Vancouver against fossil fuel projects.
Oregon court decision stops plans for methanol refinery at port westward
The Oregon Court of Appeals upheld a decision that Columbia County ignored the law in attempting to double the size of the Port Westward facility.
Investigative journalist Barbara Bernstein produced a radio series focused on exposing the risks of the Kalama methanol refinery. Follow the links below to learn!
Close to 200 people gathered on land and water at Camp Kalama on Saturday, May 18th to protest the proposed methanol refinery and listen to several speakers who voiced their oposition to the plant and praised Governor Inslee’s recent statement against the project.
Learn about the Kalama methanol refinery!
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