By Vancouver Energy On July 7, 2016
Witnesses at today’s adjudication proceedings, both marine scientists at Polaris Applied Sciences, covered oil spill safety.
Dr. Elliott Taylor said that Washington has some of the most stringent requirements on oil spill prevention and response preparedness in the U.S. and around the world, and the proposed Vancouver Energy terminal meets all those requirements. The state’s requirements exceed the response times and capabilities at the federal level and most states, he said.
Scientist Gregory Challenger testified that pre-existing contamination from background sources, such as chemicals released from burning tobacco, wood and grilled meats, may present a greater concern to salmonids on the Willamette and Lower Columbia rivers than short-term events like an oil spill.
The likelihood of a spill from the proposed terminal is very low, and oil will be transported by rail to West Coast refineries whether the terminal is built or not, so the risk of an oil spill is similar with or without the project, Challenger said.