Vancouver’s Fossil Fuel and Climate Policy Efforts

What's going on in Vancouver, WA? 

Frequently Asked Questions About Vancouver’s Fossil Fuel and Climate Policy Efforts

In late 2021, the Vancouver City Council voted unanimously to extend an important moratorium that protects Vancouver from major new fossil fuel terminals. In 2022, Vancouver will make important decisions regarding energy that impact community health and safety, including an effort to make permanent the City’s prohibition on new or expanded large-scale fossil fuel facilities.

This FAQ addresses basic questions about recent efforts by the City of Vancouver, WA, to address climate-changing pollution that impacts Vancouver neighborhoods, particularly those nearest to the Port of Vancouver and other transportation corridors. 

According to Washington’s Environmental Health Disparities Map, these communities are often disproportionately impacted by the climate-changing pollution and health-harming smog, water pollution, and safety hazards that go with major fossil fuel facilities.

What is proposed?

In 2022, Vancouver will move forward with addressing climate change both through a Climate Action Plan and a permanent ordinance to prohibit the construction of new—and the expansion of existing—large-scale fossil fuel terminals, such as rail terminals that bring in unit trains of coal, liquefied natural gas (LNG), and liquefied petroleum or propane gas (LPG).

What can I do to learn more and to take action?

Community action has driven Vancouver’s environmental progress from the very beginning. The City Council’s enthusiasm for the issue speaks to both the success of community pressure, as well as the severity of the climate crisis. Throughout 2022, there will be a number of ways to engage in Vancouver’s processes:

  1. Show the City Council that you support a permanent prohibition on new and expanded, large-scale bulk fossil fuel projects. When the time comes, we will all need to testify in support of a strong fossil fuel ordinance. We expect hearings and a vote in 2022. 

    Attend City Council meetings! Speak in support of strong climate action and the City’s policy to prohibit all new or expanded large-scale fossil fuel facilities, a policy defined carefully to protect the health and safety of Vancouver residents. You can find more information on how to speak to the Vancouver City Council at 
  2. Comment on the City’s environmental review of the large-scale fossil fuel ordinance in early 2022. The City of Vancouver will soon develop an environmental analysis under the State Environmental Policy Act (SEPA) to inform its prohibition on new or expanded, large-scale fossil fuel facilities. 

    To weigh in on this, check in with the City Council’s agendas: 
  3. Support the development of an equitable, effective Climate Action Plan (more to come on how to take action on this issue).
  4. Share this FAQ and help others understand the issues! 

For Questions about this FAQ, contact Dan Serres, Conservation Director,

  1. Washington Department of Health. December 2021. Washington Environmental Health Disparities Map.
  2. Sightline Institute. April 2021. “The Smoke and Mirrors Defense of RNG.”
  3. Sightline Institute. March 2021. “The Four Fatal Flaws of RNG.” 
  4. Natural Resources Defense Council. 2020. RNG” A Pipe Dream or a Climate Solution?” 

Vancouver’s Fossil Fuel and Climate Policy Efforts