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May 10, 2013 at 6:15 AM

Coal export terminals raise dust

Opposition to plans to move coal from the Powder River Basin in Wyoming and Montana to Asia via Northwest terminals remains intense, and has apparently drawn a response.

A coal train rolls through Seattle. (Ken Lambert/The Seattle Times).

A coal train rolls through Seattle.
(Ken Lambert/The Seattle Times).

Authorities are in the process of deciding how best to review the proposals, and how broadly to apply official scrutiny to the plans.Terminals promoted for Cherry Point near Bellingham and at Longview have stirred opposition all along the rail route from the coal source.

The Associated Press reports a terminal proposed for the Port of St. Helens was withdrawn Wednesday by its corporate sponsor, Kinder Morgan. Terminal plans drew regional and local opposition, including official concerns and skepticism from the city of Scappoose, Ore.

For all of the economic development benefits touted by the promoters of the coal terminals, the people who are supposed to be the grateful beneficiaries have doubts about what is being introduced into their communities.

Federal and state officials need to keep those concerns in mind as they weigh the breadth of reviews and measures to be applied to the applications for coal terminals.

Comments | Topics: coal trains, Kinder Morgan, Scappoose


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