Northwest Innovation Works and the Port of Kalama have applied to build a facility in Kalama that would turn natural gas into methanol. The facility would be able to produce 10,000 metric tons of methanol a day and would use 320 million cubic feet of natural gas a day. The company states that methanol would be exported and used for plastic production.
Second Supplemental Environmental Impact Statement
On Nov. 22, 2019, we notified Cowlitz County, Northwest Innovation Works, and the Port of Kalama that a second Supplemental Environmental Impact Statement (SSEIS) is necessary before making a final decision on Cowlitz County's permit for the facility.
The first supplemental environmental impact statement prepared by the applicants and an additional response to our questions on that document did not fully analyze the project's emissions. Both the Washington Shorelines Hearings Board and Cowlitz County Superior Court required more analysis of the project’s emissions.
We are asking for bids for a consultant to help with the SSEIS. We plan to announce our consultant in mid-April 2020, have a draft SSEIS this fall, ask for public comment late fall, and have the final SSEIS by the end of 2020.
- Sept. 11, 2019 — Cowlitz County reaffirmed its decision to issue a shoreline conditional use permit for the project.
- Oct. 9, 2019 — Ecology informed Cowlitz County and the project applicants that we needed additional information by Nov. 7, 2019 to complete our review of the permit.
- Nov. 4, 2019 — Cowlitz County responded to Ecology's questions.
Previously, we issued a 401 water quality certification to Northwest Pipeline to build a 3.1-mile pipeline spur that would deliver natural gas to the facility and a 401 water quality certification to Northwest Innovation Works for the facility itself. The Kalama facility would need a construction stormwater permit before construction could begin, as well as an industrial stormwater permit from us.