Bravo to the Department of Ecology and the entourage of dedicated lawyers, environmental organizations and activists who came together to defeat the world’s largest fracked fossil-gas-to-methanol refinery in Kalama.
Kalama is a small town with a culture closely integrated with the surrounding landscape and outdoor recreation, especially boating and fishing. A clean Columbia River is absolutely essential to a healthy ecology and thriving communities. The fact that the port even considered such a massive fossil fuel project is a slap in the face to our communities, our economy and our livelihoods. The claim that the project would have benefitted Kalama’s economy is inaccurate and ignorant of the crippling impacts of the climate crisis on essential resources and commodities. The Port of Kalama commissioners have wasted seven years pushing this proposal when they could have been seeking a realistic clean green project that would have already been providing jobs while protecting our health and environment.
Thanks to Ecology for performing thorough research and making the safe and appropriate decision to reject the shorelines conditional use permit. Ecology has once again demonstrated a willingness to make science-based decisions to protect Washingtonians. Northwest Innovation Works cited the regulatory process as the basis for abandoning this project, a fancy way of saying they failed to provide evidence to support the project’s safety and compliance with environmental standards.
I am elated that the refinery will be left in the dust alongside several other fossil fuel projects proposed for Washington in recent years. Washington deserves a strong and healthy future, and nothing supports that vision more than a transition away from dirty fracked-gas and toward renewable energy and a sustainable future.
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