The proposed project would have potentially brought hundreds of thousands of crude oil to the Port of Vancouver USA each day for export to refineries on the U.S. West Coast.
Washington state Gov. Jay Inslee on Monday formally rejected the site certification application for a proposed project that would have potentially brought hundreds of thousands of crude oil to the Port of Vancouver USA each day for export to refineries on the U.S. West Coast.
Inslee’s action follows a December recommendation by the Washington state Energy Facility Site Evaluation Council (EFSEC) that he disapprove the project. Under the EFSEC process, the governor has final say over the approval of energy projects.
The project had been under review by the EFSEC since August 2013.
“After considering the record in this proceeding, I concur with the Council’s unanimous recommendation to reject the application,” Inslee wrote in a letter to EFSEC Chair Kathleen Drew. “After considering all of the evidence in the record, the Council found that the risks of siting the proposed project at the Port of Vancouver exceeded the project’s potential benefits and determined that the application is not in the public interest.”
The Vancouver Energy project is a joint venture between Andeavor (formerly Tesoro Corp.) and Savage Companies. The project had proposed to bring up to 360,000 barrels of North American crude oil by rail daily to a 42-acre distribution facility, where it would be loaded into U.S.-built, U.S.-flagged, and U.S.-staffed marine vessels for shipment to refineries in Alaska, California and Washington.
“Based on EFSEC’s recommendation, we aren’t surprised by the governor’s decision to reject the Vancouver Energy project,” said port CEO Julianna Marler. “Our mission continues to be providing economic benefit to our community through leadership, stewardship and partnership in marine, industrial and waterfront development. We appreciate the governor’s recognition of our important role in regional trade and we will continue to fulfill that role.”
The Governor’s rejection of the project is the final nail in the coffin, but the writing had been on the wall for some time. Two weeks after the EFSEC recommendation was issued, the Port of Vancouver USA Board of Commissioners voted unanimously to give notice to the developer that if the project hadn’t received all necessary licenses, permits and approvals required to operate by March 31, the lease would be terminated.