A proposed coal terminal in Oregon is not dead yet, despite that state’s rejection of a required permit.
Ambre Energy and Port of Morrow have appealed the Department of State Land’s decision in August to reject an application from Ambre to build a dock at the port’s Coyote Island facilities in Boardman, Ore. The dock would be used to load barges with up to 8.8 million tons of coal per year, for delivery to larger shipping vessels and eventual export to Asia.
In its appeal, filed Monday, Sept. 8, Ambre said a decision on a bulk-commodity dock that should have been based on technical environmental matters was in fact politically motivated:
Port of Morrow, in its appeal, countered the state’s claim that the dock would interfere with tribal fishing rights. That was one of several reasons the state cited for rejecting the permit.
See the joint Ambre Energy/Port of Morrow press release here.
Opponents of coal exports also issued a release after the appeal. Their statement cast the state’s decision in a political light, too, although the state in its own words said it followed the letter of its law in rejecting the permit:
Here’s the political angle coal opponents Columbia Riverkeeper, Earthjustice and Sierra Club took (from the press release):
The environmental groups had a good early analysis of the port and coal company’s chances on appeal. They also hinted at how long the appeal process could take:
Given that some life remains in the Oregon coal-export proposal, three such projects remain in the Pacific Northwest. In addition to Coyote Island, Ambre Energy has an interest in the Millennium Bulk Terminal proposal for Longview, Wash. Seattle-based SSA Marine would build Gateway Pacific Terminal on Cherry Point. That terminal is in the early stages of an environmental review officials said would take 13 months to complete.