Does Washington SEPA Process Discover Truth?

State Environmental Policy Act (“SEPA”) Helps How?

I have always had questions about how a SEPA can protect the environment by its results when the detailed scientific studies, data, and articles are not published first before public input permitted by the SEPA process.

Others have questioned the SEPA process also; for example:

Therefore, a lot of questions about just how effective is Wash. SEPA process?

We will all know more as the Tacoma Methanol Facility SEPA EIS process unfolds.

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Tacoma: Methanol Facility: Actual Injury

Actual injury, the question is: who pays who and how much?

That has caused me to make a comment

My Methanol Facility comment submitted to Tacoma EIS is this:

To: Tacoma.methanol.sepa@cityoftacoma.org

Friday, February 5, 2016

EIS Scoping Comments: Tacoma Manufacturing and Marine Export Facility (TMMEF): “Proposed Methanol Plant”: SEPA Lead Agency: City of Tacoma (File No. SEPA2015-40000260025).

My comment applies to environment after actual harm caused by—Methanol facility: “Exploration of financial liability beyond the amounts typically held by the plant operators” See, METHANOL EIS DRAFT SCOPING REPORT 02052016.PDF 14, http://cms.cityoftacoma.org/planning/Methanol%20Plant/Methanol%20EIS%20Draft%20Scoping%20Report%2002052016.pdf (last visited Feb 6, 2016). Missing is the liability to each person within the Tacoma Community related to making them whole again as a result of harm caused by this Tacoma Methanol Facility?

I find absent from Tacoma Community impact analysis is: Owners and operators of the Tacoma natural gas (methane)-to-methanol facility fail to explain their actual limits-of-financial liability to Community, people, and persons harmed or injured caused by operation of methanol facility?

My comment: Included within the Draft EIS(s) and all Final FEIS should be a statement describing actual Methanol Facility liability limitation(s) or coverage benefit(s); as a result, for any actual harm or injury caused to Tacoma Community—people, real property, property, lives, and health. Also a statement that, liability coverage is guaranteed to Community persons for all current and all future years as Methanol Facility continues processing natural gas (methane).

John E Sherman
4601 N 26th St
Tacoma WA 98407-4605 USA
Email: jmjsherman@gmail.com
http://johnesherman.com
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It’s funny, just how: thinking one thought; as a result, causes one to think of another thought: Just like this liability of actual injury and who is compensated how much to make the damaged person or property whole again. Didn’t see that explained in the Draft Tacoma EIS related to the Methanol Facility just yet. It’s important when there exists potential hazards operating within the Tacoma Community.

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LNG Permits: No interest in community interests

How does a typical LNG export permit work?

Let’s take a look at a typical example; for example, Order conditionally granting long-term, multi-contract authorizations to export liquefied natural gas by vessel from the proposed Alaska LNG terminal in Niskiski, Alaska, to non-free Trade Agreement Nations, (collectively, “LNG permit”)1

LNG permit process sounds good for the community and public goods when considering a LNG facitlity and a LNG export facility but is the process really that comprehensive and inclusive of community people input response?

Just a typical LNG permit process presents

I think the LNG permit process is deficient for the public input to make a difference e.g.,

[N]o person shall export any natural gas from the United States to a foreign country or import any natural gas from a foreign country without first having secured an order of the [Secretary of Energy [n. 61] 6 ] authorizing it to do so. The [Secretary] shall issue such order upon application, unless after opportunity for hearing, [he] finds that the proposed exportation or importation will not be consistent with the public interest. The [Secretary] may by [the Secretary’s] order grant such application, in whole or part, with such modification and upon such terms and conditions as the [Secretary] may find necessary or appropriate.

(§ 3(a) Public Interest Standard 1, at 3, (alteration in original)).

Let’s take a look at words

While section 3(a) establishes a broad public interest standard and a presumption favoring export authorizations, the statute does not define "public interest" or identify criteria that must be considered. In prior decisions, however, DOE/FE has identified a range of factors that it evaluates when reviewing an application for export authorization. These factors include economic impacts, international impacts, security of natural gas supply, and environmental impacts, among others. . . .

(§ 3(a) Public Interest Standard 1, at 3, (emphasis added)).

Missing is community right-to-know safety study results or reports required. Our communities have the right-to-know what hazards potential are constructed and operated within our community (people, residential, housing, living, transportation areas)!

How is my community input appreciated?

Reading this actual LNG permit, I fail to see weighting of the community (people) inputs or concerns to any meaningful decision factor in granting this LNG permit.

Therefore, this might just be a same or similar process used at Pierce County, Tacoma, Port of Tacoma, Washington for a future LNG application for an export permit? So, the community should be aware how the public input process works for evaluation of their input into all LNG application permit(s) everywhere.

Works cited

(1) Yousef Rahman, ORDER CONDITIONALLY GRANTING LONG-TERM, MULTI-CONTRACT AUTHORIZATION TO EXPORT LIQUEFIED NATURAL GAS BY VESSEL FROM THE PROPOSED ALASKA LNG TERMINAL IN NIKISKI, ALASKA, TO NON-FREE TRADE AGREEMENT NATIONS, FE DOCKET NO. 14–96-LNG (United States Of America Department Of Energy Office Of Fossil Energy 2015), http://energy.gov/sites/prod/files/2015/05/f22/ord3643.pdf or http://1.usa.gov/1R1XtSi

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