Methanol Comment Period Wraps for Plant in Kalama



April 18, 2016 (Kalama, WA) — Today, the Draft Environmental Impact Statement (DEIS) comment period wraps for a proposed methanol plant at the Port of Kalama. Methanol from the plant would be shipped through the Columbia River estuary to China where it would be used to make plastic.

“In 1997, a natural gas pipeline leaked and exploded just one mile from our home. We were lucky that our home was not destroyed,” said landowner Tina Linnell. “Now, NW Pipeline is threatening to use eminent domain on our property to build a new pipeline just a few hundred yards from our home to supply natural gas to NW Innovation Works’ methanol plant. One natural gas pipeline explosion near my home is enough. I don’t want their pipeline on my property.”

The gas pipeline to NW Innovation Works would use eminent domain to cross residential property and near a pioneer cemetery. NW Innovation Works would consume one-third as much gas as the entire state of Washington. This one project would increase Washington's total greenhouse gas emissions by between one to two-percent (not including exhaust from tanker ships and the methane released during fracking).

Project proponent, Northwest Innovation Works LLC (NWIW), is a new company backed by the Chinese government. In addition to the Kalama project, NWIW is proposing gas-to-methanol plants at the Port of Tacoma and near Clatskanie, Oregon.

Cowlitz County and other Washington agencies will use the EIS to inform their decisions on the land, air, and water permits that NWIW would need. Read comments on the DEIS by Columbia Riverkeeper and other groups here.

About Columbia Riverkeeper
Columbia Riverkeeper’s mission is to protect and restore the water quality of the Columbia River and all life connected to it, from the headwaters to the Pacific Ocean. Representing over 10,000 members and supporters, Columbia Riverkeeper works to restore a Columbia River where people can safely eat the fish they catch and children can swim without fear of toxic exposure. The organization is a member of Waterkeeper Alliance, the world’s fastest-growing environmental movement, uniting more than 200 Waterkeeper organizations worldwide. For more information go to