The Washington Department of Ecology found a permit application for a proposed natural gas-to-methanol refinery in Kalama to be incomplete. The application’s Environmental Impact Report was missing specific details about the project’s plan to mitigate greenhouse gas emissions.

The proposed facility has drawn backlash from climate justice groups including 350 Seattle, Sierra Club Washington State Chapter and Power Past Fracked Gas, who claim the refinery “would use more gas than all of Washington’s industries combined.”

Governer Jay Inslee announced his opposition to this project and a proposed natural gas plant in Tacoma in a press release earlier this year.

The Department of Ecology estimated “the facility would be capable of producing 10,000 metric tons of methanol a day, and would consume 320 million cubic feet of natural gas each day. The company states that methanol would be exported and used for plastic production.”

In an October 9 press release, the Department of Ecology said the applicants (Port of Kalama and Northwest Innovation Works) have until November 7 to provide the information missing from a shoreline conditional use permit application. If adequate information is received, the department will “issue a final permit decision within 30 days.”

The statement comes on the heals of Cowlitz County’s decision to issue the shoreline conditional use permit on September 11. See Ecology’s letter requesting environmental impact details from Cowlitz County and the Port of Kalama here.

The proposed facility would be the largest fracked gas-to-methanol refinery in the world and greatly increase local use of fossil fuels.

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Tell Ecology to deny the permit

With the project temporarily delayed, the public has more time to provide input by emailing the Department of Ecology at or calling 360-407-6969. 

Use this link to urge Ecology to deny the proposed refinery.

Featured photo by Alexander Tsang on Unsplash