Breaking news: Seattle Times Report on Kalama Methanol

Rejecting donations from the fossil fuel industry is the new litmus test of politicians. But Representative DeBolt is literally on the payroll of a fossil fuel corporation. 

Breaking news: Seattle Times Report on Kalama Methanol

seattle times report on kalama methanol

Did you see this article in the Seattle Times, “As controversial Washington methanol plant moves along, opposing group criticizes one lawmaker’s role.”  

Northwest Innovation Works is paying Representative Richard DeBolt, a sitting legislator, a six-figure salary to promote the Kalama methanol refinery. Rejecting donations from the fossil fuel industry is the new litmus test of politicians. But Representative DeBolt is literally on the payroll of a fossil fuel corporation. Even worse, he organized meetings with the Department of Ecology and Governor’s office to promote the methanol refinery.

On June 3, 2019, The Seattle Times reported on Northwest Innovation Works’ questionable behavior. The story is another strike against the company’s proposed methanol refinery in Kalama, Washington. First, news broke on April 19, 2019, that the Methanol Developer May be Misleading Regulators, Public.

Second, on May 8, 2019, Governor Jay Inslee announced opposition to two gas projects in Washington, including Kalama Methanol and Tacoma LNG.

Current status of the proposal: Northwest Innovation Works’ needs approval from the Washington Department of Ecology (Ecology) and permits from local and federal agencies. While Governor Inslee is not involved with Ecology’s decision, the Governor noted that “it’s time for us to modernize and update the ways we weigh the costs and benefits of all fossil fuels, including natural gas.” Ecology has already raised serious questions about the methanol refinery’s climate impacts.

About the project

A company called Northwest Innovation Works, which is backed by the Chinese Academy of Sciences, proposes building two of the world’s largest fracked-gas-to-methanol refineries in Kalama, Washington, and Port Westward, Oregon. Methanol is a chemical used to make plastic or burned as a fuel. A single refinery could consume 320 million cubic feet of fracked gas per day, more than all other industrial uses in Washington state combined. Each refinery would emit more than 1 million tons of greenhouse gases from the smokestacks alone—and emit up to 7 million tons when “upstream” methane leakage is considered.

Act Now: Protect Our Climate

Tell the Washington Department of Ecology (Ecology) to say “No!” to a climate disaster: a proposal for the world’s largest fracked-gas-to-methanol refinery in Kalama, Washington.

 
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Resource Library: 

DeBolt Documents:
Methanol as Fuel Investor Documents:
Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States Documents: