Instead of allowing the Kalama Methanol Refinery to move forward, the Washington Department of Ecology (Ecology) is taking a closer look at the proposal’s impacts on the Columbia River and Washington’s climate. A letter from Ecology to Cowlitz County on April 18, 2017, explained that the methanol refinery’s Shorelines permit contained outdate and incomplete information.
Specifically, Ecology said that the plans submitted by Northwest Innovation Works did not clearly show what parts of the methanol refinery would be built in protected shoreline areas. Ecology also calculated that the methanol refinery would emit roughly 20-percent more greenhouse gasses than Northwest Innovation Works had previously admitted.
The methanol refinery is now on hold until Cowlitz County and Northwest Innovation Works provide more information and Ecology makes a decision about the facility’s Shorelines permit.
Read news coverage on Ecology’s decision:
- Seattle Times: “Ecology department voids key permit for Kalama’s $1.8B, Chinese-backed methanol plant”
- OPB: “Proposed Kalama Methanol Refinery Hits Snag In Permit Approval”
- The Longview Daily News: “Decision on methanol shoreline permit delayed”