Joint News Release: City of Hoquiam and Department of Ecology - April 4, 2014

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Environmental reviews begin soon for proposed expansion projects in 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 crude oil.

From April 10 through May 27, the state Department of Ecology and the city of Hoquiam invite the public to comment on what should be studied in environmental impact statements (EISs) being prepared for proposals submitted by Westway Terminal Company  and Imperium Renewables.

An EIS is a document that provides information about the effects of a proposal. It is neither a decision nor a permit. The EISs compile information that helps inform future decisions made by local and state permitting agencies. Permit decisions cannot be made until after the environmental reviews are complete.

Both proposals are at the first step in the EIS process -- the scoping period. The purpose of scoping is to gather input on what should be studied in the EIS. After considering comments received during scoping, the agencies will decide what to study in the EISs. Ecology and Hoquiam have already identified certain study areas that will be noted in their determinations of significance, to be published on April 10 and available via Ecology’s website

Scoping comments may be shared orally at scoping meetings, submitted in writing via standard mail or via an electronic comment form. The mailing address is Westway and Imperium Renewables Expansion Projects, 710 Second Avenue, Suite 550, Seattle, WA 98104.

Two public meetings with open house sessions are scheduled. No formal presentation will occur, so people may arrive and leave as they choose during the meetings. Meetings are 5 to 9 p.m., with public comment beginning at 6 p.m.

Though the proposals are separate, the agencies are holding a joint scoping comment period. All comments received will be considered for the environmental reviews for both proposals. Public comments submitted regarding these proposals in earlier environmental reviews also will be considered. Information about the environmental review and the project proposals is available on Ecology’s website.

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Media Contact:

Linda Kent, 360-791-9830, @ecySW