Port Of Vancouver Votes Again To Approve Controversial Oil Terminal Lease

Oct 23, 2013

The Port of Vancouver Commission voted Tuesday to re-approve a lease for a controversial oil terminal.

The vote follows a lawsuit filed by environmental groups. They argue the port commission violated public meetings law when it first approved the lease in July. Opponents of the project raised new safety concerns in light of the oil train derailment and explosion in Alberta on Saturday. They also pointed to a large oil spill in North Dakota from a pipeline owned by project backer Tesoro Corporation. Port Commissioner Nancy Baker said those incidents didn't change her mind.

Baker: "We can speculate a lot about what happened. They were maybe circumstances that were under other people's control or God's control."

The oil terminal project still needs to complete a year-long state permitting process. It will also need approval from Washington's governor before it can be built.

Copyright 2013 Oregon Public Broadcasting