Department of Ecology News Release - August 5, 2011


Gateway Pacific Terminal site work lacked state permit

BELLINGHAM – The Washington Department of Ecology (Ecology) has notified Pacific International Terminals Inc. (Pacific International) that it violated state law at the site of the proposed Gateway Pacific Terminal near Cherry Point in Whatcom County when it cleared land and built roads without a state stormwater permit for construction sites.

Ecology directed Pacific International to submit the required applications by Aug. 15, 2011.

In separate, related action, Ecology is investigating whether the work at the site violated wetland-protection requirements.

Construction projects larger than one acre must have coverage under Ecology’s Construction Stormwater General Permit. The road-building so far covers nine acres.

Ecology also directed Pacific International to provide additional information, including the project’s start date and its eventual total size. The company also must certify that it will comply with the requirements of the general permit.

Failure to correct the violation can lead to further compliance action, including civil fines.

Ecology has developed general water quality permits for several business categories, including one for stormwater discharges from one-acre and larger construction projects. Project owners must obtain permit coverage from Ecology prior to starting work.

Ecology inspectors observed that, due to dry weather, there were no signs of stormwater discharges from the project at the Gateway Pacific Terminal site.

Whatcom County received reports of the roadwork late last month. The county has fined Pacific International for conducting the work without a permit.

Ecology’s notice to Pacific International appears online at: under Related Documents.


Media Contacts:

Larry Altose, Ecology media relations, 206-920-2600,

Richard Grout, Ecology Bellingham Field Office Supervisor, 360-715-5200

For more information:

Gateway Pacific Terminal, Ecology information and links (

Construction Stormwater General Permit (