[caption id="" align="alignright" width="434"] Photo by Paul K Anderson[/caption]
One year ago, Oregon received a fiery wakeup call when an oil train derailed in Mosier. Today, a company operating in the Columbia River estuary is quietly assembling the pieces for a massive oil-by-rail terminal.
The Oregon Public Utilities Commission has final say on whether Global Partners can buy massive oil storage tanks from a neighboring industrial site at Port Westward, in Clatskanie, Oregon. The Commission can stop Global Partners’ tank farm expansion if it finds the sale is not “consistent with the public interest.”
After robust public testimony delivered by Columbia County residents, NW Steelheaders, health professionals, and concerned residents at a June 13, 2017 public hearing, the Oregon Public Utilities Commission (PUC) decided to seek additional information before voting to approve the sale. A second hearing will be scheduled at a later date. Global Partners — the company vying for the oil tank expansion — has a rocky history with oil-by-rail in Oregon. In 2012, the company began operating as an oil-by-rail terminal under an existing approval for an ethanol refinery. By 2013, the company had violated their permit, public trust, and safety by illegally shipping six times more crude oil than allowed. In 2015, Global stopping handling oil due to the lower-than-expected price of crude oil and started operating an ethanol-by-rail terminal.Now, Global Partners wants to buy nine oil tanks and an oil pipeline connecting the tanks to a dock on the Columbia River. A massive expansion of oil infrastructure paves the way for Global Partners to return to the oil-by-rail business.
Oil terminals and oil-by-rail threaten public safety, clean water, and our climate. Please tell the Oregon Public Utilities Commission to block the oil tank farm sale today!
- "Oregon Utility Board Considers Controversial Sale Of Oil Tanks" via OPB News, June 13, 2017
- "Sale Of Storage Tanks Raises Concerns About An Oil Terminal In Oregon" via OPB News, May 23, 2017
- Tank Farm Sale Fact Sheet
- Columbia Riverkeeper Comments
- Public Utilities Commission docket of the proposed tank sale