Submit public comment on the changes to the Shoreline permit for Kalama Methanol Refinery. Public comment closes February 7, 2017.

More Info: Comment on Last-Minute Changes to the Kalama Methanol Refinery Proposal

Hearing Updates:
After three full days of public hearings, the Hearings Examiner for the Shoreline Substantial Development permit has allowed Northwest Innovation Works to update portions of their proposal for the world's largest methanol refinery. Northwest Innovation Works has until Tuesday, January 31, 2017 at 5:00 pm to provide new and additional information for the Hearings Examiner to consider. the material will be made available on the Cowlitz County website. Members of the public will be allowed to comment on the new and additional information until February 7, 2017 at 5 pm. Comments may be submitted to MelinR@co.cowlitz.wa.us. The Hearings Examiner will make his recommendation shortly after. His recommendation will then be considered by the Washington Department of Ecology.


Public Hearing Extended, Overflows into Day Two for the World’s Largest Proposed Gas-to-Methanol Plant

Eagle release in Longview, photo by Rick Rappaport.
Eagle release at Gerhart Gardens, photo by Rick Rappaport © 2017.

January 23, 2017 (Longview, WA) — Over one hundred residents from across the Pacific Northwest attended a hearing in Longview today to stand against a proposal to build the world’s largest gas-to-methanol plant at the Port of Kalama. Cowlitz County took public testimony on the local land use Shorelines Substantial Development permits for Northwest Innovation Works’ (NWIW) Kalama methanol refinery.

To elevate the importance of shoreline habitat, the Portland Audubon Society released a rehabilitated bald eagle near the confluence of the Cowlitz and Columbia River at Gerhart Gardens Park during the hearing break. Micah Meskel, Conservation Field Coordinator at Audubon Society of Portland said, “Witnessing a rehabilitated bald eagle fly free serves as a reminder to decisionmakers of the negative impact new fossil fuel infrastructure — like the Kalama methanol refinery—will have on wildlife in and around the Columbia River.”

“The proposed methanol refinery would negatively impact the shorelines of the Columbia River and surrounding communities. Residents from across the region came together to show their opposition at the hearing,” said Jasmine Zimmer-Stucky, Senior Organizer with Columbia Riverkeeper. “A foreign-government controlled chemical refinery is a bad fit for the Columbia River and Kalama.”

This plant would consume one-third as much gas as the entire state of Washington and threatens to seize private property to build a new pipeline. The methanol refinery and export terminal would disrupt the Columbia River and its shorelines, harming fish, wildlife, and recreation near Kalama.

There will be additional time for testimony Tuesday and Wednesday starting at 9:00 am. Tuesday’s hearing will give Earthjustice and Columbia Riverkeeper an opportunity for rebuttal to NWIW arguments.

VISUALS: available upon request, email liz@columbiariverkeeper.org.

About Columbia Riverkeeper
Columbia Riverkeeper protects and restores the water quality of the Columbia River and all life connected to it, from the headwaters to the Pacific Ocean. Representing over 12,000 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. Columbia Riverkeeper is a member of Waterkeeper Alliance, the world’s fastest-growing environmental movement, uniting more than 300 Waterkeeper organizations worldwide. For more information go to columbiariverkeeper.org.