Wednesday, May 7, 2014

Maria Cantwell pushes for stronger regulation today, while the Department of Transportation called the movement of crude oil by rail an “imminent hazard” to the public

Zoltan Grossman writes a LTE: Honor Billy Frank, Jr. 

H/T to Area Crafter: 
But, would you still want to drink the water? "Henrico officials said they are monitoring the spill and are filling water storage tanks as a precaution, but don’t expect the oil to enter the county’s supply.
“Our intake is very deep in the river, and if it’s crude oil floating down on top, even if it does come, it shouldn’t concern us,” said William Mawyer, the assistant director of the county’s public utilities."

From Terry Wechsler 

(ed note: Are you on Lynne's fantastic email list? all you have to do to receive these timely notices is to sign this petition.)

Please put out a call to action to folks about the Shell Anacortes crude-by-rail (CBR) proposal. Skagit County Planning and Development Services issued a mitigated determination of nonsignificance (MDNS). There will be no EIS for what is now the 4th refinery CBR proposal in Whatcom and Skagit Counties. Skagit County is accepting requests for reconsideration through close of businessFridaybut they must be received by then, NOT postmarked. I think it is more important for us to immediately ask the governor's office to direct either the state department of Ecology or EFSEC to intervene and assume lead agency status, to conduct a joint EIS with the county as is occurring with the coal terminals.  (See governing SEPA rule below.***)
I am asking people to contact the governor's office on issues related to fossil fuels, and to do so via our ex-director of Ecology, now on his staff:
Ted Sturdevant, Executive Director of Legislative & Policy Office:

One basis upon which the county issued the MDNS was lack of jurisdiction over mitigations relating to rail and vessel traffic beyond the site. That should not preclude the county from conducting the EIS, but in addition to lacking jurisdiction, they lack the necessary expertise. The state legislature, on the other hand, just allocated $300,000 to the governor to give to Ecology to study the state-wide impacts of crude by rail proposals, specifically:
Puget Sound, Grays Harbor, and the Columbia River will be included in the marine portion of the study. The inland portion of the study will include the entire oil transportation corridor. The study looks at:
· the current and anticipated transportation pictures for marine and rail.
· the current and anticipated safety pictures for marine and rail.
· any existing gaps.
Based on these findings, the study will inform recommendations for public health, safety and environmental concerns; statement of safety benefits vs. the cost of implementation; recommendation for funding programs; and a risk communication strategy.

For more information, see: These studies are the functional equivalent of a limited regional cumulative EIS.

We've been working on a petition. 
We hope to have it for you at tomorrow's Furford meeting and the miracle of the internets.

Are you bringing all your friends and all their moneys to the Al Smith Fundraiser on Friday?  
$6 Baked Potato Dinner and Auction
Please join us this Friday, May 9th at the fundraiser for Al Smith's County Commissioner campaign. 5 to 8pm, at the 40 et 8 in Aberdeen, 2313 Simpson Avenue.

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