Voices standing up for communities and calling for an end to reckless oil trains

Final Tesoro Savage Public Comment Hearing 8/22/17 Draws Strong Opposition to Oil Train Terminal



August 22, 2017 (Vancouver, WA)–Today, Washington’s Energy Facility Site Evaluation Council (EFSEC) held its final major public hearing on the Tesoro Savage oil-by-rail terminal, with over 150 attendees urging EFSEC to deny the largest proposed oil train terminal in North America. The hearing focused on stormwater pollution from the proposed terminal, but many people used the opportunity to urge EFSEC and Governor Jay Inslee to deny the project as a whole.

Among the voices standing up for communities and calling for an end to reckless oil trains:

“After four years of hearings, over a dozen oil train derailments, and hundreds of thousands of comments in opposition to Tesoro Savage, it’s time for Governor Inslee and EFSEC to reject this dangerous proposal,” said Dan Serres, Conservation Director for Columbia Riverkeeper. “Oil trains blow up. They threaten our safety, our health, and our river. It’s that simple.”

“This permit gives Tesoro the approval to pollute our state’s waters, just as it would pollute our air and endanger our safety,“ said Rebecca Ponzio, Campaign Director of Stand Up To Oil. “This project is the largest proposal in North America and simply has no place here in our region.”

Dr. Stan Freidberg of Oregon and Washington Physicians for Social Responsibility stated, “The stakes here are just too high. EFSEC should deny this industrial stormwater permit and the entire project–which would be the largest oil-by-rail facility in the nation. We know that it’s just a matter of time before the catastrophic impacts of the Tesoro project will harm our communities, water, our air and the climate that sustains us.”

“We’ll not be able to avert catastrophic climate change by building more fossil fuel infrastructure. We’ll not be able to protect salmon by allowing more water pollution, and we won’t be able to protect our health unless they use the best available control technology–which they won’t,” said Don Steinke, a Vancouver environmental advocate and organizer. “The Cities of Vancouver, Astoria, and Seattle have said ‘No’ to this project, and EFSEC and Governor Inslee should do the same.”

“This oil export terminal will endanger our communities and further contribute to climate change at a time when we need to stop using fossil fuels. Allowing this to pass would be immoral,” said Cecile Gernez, Conservation Organizer with the Sierra Club. “The Energy Facility Site Evaluation Council and the Governor need to do what's best for Washington and our climate by denying this project!

What’s Next for Oil-by-Rail in the Pacific NW?
In the coming months, Washington’s Energy Facility Siting Evaluation Council (EFSEC) will make a recommendation on the Tesoro Savage proposal in Vancouver, Washington. Ultimately, Washington Governor Jay Inslee will make the final decision about whether to deny the terminal which would be the largest oil train terminal in North America. The project would bring up to five loaded oil trains each day through the Columbia River Gorge carrying the same volatile Bakken crude oil that burned during the Mosier derailment in June 2016.



STAND UP TO OIL is a growing coalition of groups opposed to new oil terminals and an increase in oil transport through the Northwest. Learn more at Standuptooil.org.