U.S. Bureau of Land Management releases draft management plan for Western Oregon

Today the Bureau of Land Management announced the release of draft alternatives for the future management of 2.5 million acres of BLM-administered lands in western Oregon to better achieve

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Environmental reviews begin for two proposed expansion projects at Port of Grays Harbor

HOQUIAM – Environmental reviews begin next week for two separate proposals in Hoquiam to expand facilities and increase capacity to receive, store and ship bulk liquids like biofuels and

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Public Comment period extended on Grays Harbor navigation improvement

SEATTLE – A public comment period for the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Grays Harbor Navigation Improvement Project draft limited reevaluation report including a draft supplemental Environmental Impact Statement has been extended through April 8. The draft reevaluation report, draft supplemental EIS and appendices are available to review on line at: http://1.usa.gov/MS6jUw  or through Seattle District’s main website: http://www.nws.usace.army.mil by clicking on “Grays Harbor Navigation” under the “Most Requested” column. The Corps is accepting public comments on the draft limited reevaluation report and supplemental EIS through April 8.   Comments can be sent via email to: GraysHarborComments@usace.army.mil or through the mail to Josh Jackson, CENWS-PM-CP, PO Box 3755, Seattle, WA 98124-3755. Background The Grays Harbor federal navigation deep draft channel is 250 feet wide at Cosmopolis, increasing to 1,000 feet over the Bar at the mouth of Grays Harbor. The currently maintained channel depth is -36 feet Mean Lower Low Water (MLLW) from the South Reach to the Cow Point Reach, where Port of Grays Harbor Terminal 4 is located. The channel then decreases to -32 feet MLLW through Cosmopolis. The Corps investigated the feasibility of dredging the channel from the South Reach upstream to Cow Point to its fully legislatively authorized depth of -38 feet MLLW. This project covers approximately 14.5 miles of the 27.5 mile channel.  Deepening of the relevant portion of the Grays Harbor navigation channel to -38 feet MLLW was authorized by Congress in 1986, but a 1989 economic evaluation found that dredging only to -36 feet MLLW was economically justified at that time. Through updated economic and environmental analysis the present study has evaluated implementing the previously authorized -38-foot depth through a Limited Reevaluation Report and a Supplemental Environmental Impact Statement (EIS), building on the original 1982 EIS and its 1989 Supplement.

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Hoquiam council packed with public comment, as city moves forward with EIS

Concerned citizens packed the city council chambers in Hoquiam last night, most wearing red, all opposed to any action by the council on two efforts to export Crude by Rail from Grays Harbor. As Judy Shirdal said “I am against Crude by Rail, and Crude oil storage in our community. If these projects pass, and are implemented, it could forever change the health and safety of our towns.” The comments centered around hazards that crude-by-rail could bring, as Karoonuh Johnson said “Leadership has to accept that if we have a global economy, we also have a global environment.” East County resident Radley Young added that the council’s actions affect so many more cities than just Hoquiam. “There are a tremendous amount of small communities that are bisected by the railroad, and they’ve been like that for a long time. But they’ve never had to deal with such a potential threat.” As we reported earlier this month, City Administrator Brian Shay told Port of Grays Harbor Commissioners “With any luck 30 days from now we will be formally launching the EIS, and done 12 months from now. City council last night adopted the report by staff recommending a consultant begin the Environmental Impact Statement process for Westway Terminals and Imperium Renewables, two companies that would like to expand export operations in Hoquiam.

Hoquiam to begin Draft Environment Impact Statement for crude by rail projects

The city of Hoquiam is moving forward on drafting an Environmental Impact Statement for two of three companies that want to export crude oil from Grays Harbor. “We’ve selected our top consultant, ICF Jones & Stokes.” City Administrator Brian Shay told the Port Commissioners last week that they are negotiating a contract with the firm now. “With any luck 30 days from now we will be formally launching the EIS, and done 12 months from now. The consultant, ICF Jones & Stokes is currently drafting an EIS for Millennium Bulk Terminals Project to export coal from Longview, Shay added “We hope to identify all of the issues that the Shoreline’s Board and the appellants identified in the appeals when we make our public notice on the scoping. We’re going to look at this long list of issues. Shay said Westway Terminals and Imperium Renewables will reimburse the city for costs of the EIS review “I think the reason the companies have chosen to do an EIS is that they hope it will address all of the issues that were outlined by the Shorelines Board and that it won’t end up in appeal again. Projects for both companies were put on hold last year when the Shoreline’s Hearings Board remanded the permits for further review.

Public meeting planned for Grays Harbor Navigation Improvement draft

A public meeting about the US Army Corps of Engineers Grays Harbor Navigation Improvement Project draft limited reevaluation report including a draft supplemental Environmental Impact Statement

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Imperium Renewables and Westway team up to get paperwork moving on expansion plans

Imperium Renewables and Westway have sent a joint letter today asking the City of Hoquiam and the state Department of Ecology to begin developing environmental impact statements (EIS) on the

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Ecology seeks comments on proposals to control non-native eelgrass and burrowing shrimp

OLYMPIA – The Department of Ecology (Ecology) invites the public to comment on the scope of an environmental impact statement (EIS) for a proposal to control burrowing shrimp in Willapa

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