Northwest Innovation Works LLC (NWIW), a new company (who has never built a methanol facility) backed by the Chinese government, wants to build the largest methanol (a volatile petrochemical) refinery in the world (about as large as all seven U.S. methanol plants combined) on the Columbia River in the small town of Kalama, Washington. Fracked gas from B.C. and the Rockies would be brought by a 300-mile long Williams pipeline (which will need expansion) through Washington to Kalama, converted to methanol (in a process never before used industrially), and exported in super-tankers through the Columbia River estuary to China where it would be used to make plastics, burned as transportation fuel, or sold on the open market.

Click for larger image. Photo credit: Sally Keely

This is NOT a "not in my backyard" protest. This massive facility should not be built ANYWHERE. We need to REDUCE our use of fossil fuels, keep them in the ground! Move to sustainable energies NOW -- wind, solar, geothermal -- these are the only acceptable way to power the earth. Renewable energy is also the fastest growing job sector.

Peoples Climate March Boat Parade April 2017 Kalama Wa. John Flynn, boat owner. Rick Rappaport, Photographer.
Photo credit: Rick Rappaport

This refinery takes local resident's private property through eminent domain (for corporate not public gain), obligates Washington state to decades more of fossil fuel infrastructure and consumption, contributes substantially to global warming, uses vast amounts of fresh water, pollutes our air and river, harms salmon, and exposes the people of the northwest to health and safety risks. This is an extremely dangerous proposal, all for 192 jobs (few from Cowlitz County). Not worth the risks! Say NO to methanol. Don't let the beautiful Columbia River estuary become the new Gulf Coast disaster.

Disclaimer: We do our best to assure all statements here are factual and sourced. We claim no responsibility for typos, errors, or misstatements.


Join Us in Action Now!


March 2018:
Scoping comment period during February was a grand success!

  • 11,000 comments received!
  • 100 new yard signs in 3 weeks
  • 250 people attended one of four public information meetings
  • 10+ letters to the editor
  • 1 solid editorial from the Columbian (below) 
  • phone banking to 500 people
  • 11 organizations representing local, regional, national, and tribal concerns signed on to the technical scoping comments 

Thanks to all for writing, calling, flyering, etc. Keep the pressure on Gov. Inslee while we await new EIS.

Stockholm Environmental Institute (SEI) Report on GHG emissions from Kalama methanol refinery.
Important read! Check it out!
[Press Release | CRK Post]

EcoWatch: Fracked Gas Project Could Undermine Washington’s Clean Energy Goals

Columbian Editorial: Conundrum in Kalama

November 2017:
Port of Kalama and Cowlitz County (using tax payer $$) filed appeals to the State Board's decision.

[POK appeal | CCo appeal]

Court date(s) T.B.A. Meanwhile, NWIW will work on new EIS per the State Board's directive.

TDN: Cowlitz County joins lawsuit over methanol permit decision

TDN: Port of Kalama challenges reversal of methanol permits

AP News via Washington TImes: Port of Kalama appeals order nixing methanol project permits

AP News via Tacoma News Tribune: Kalama port to do environmental review of methanol plant

September 2017: State Board rules key permits invalid! Brand new EIS required! New EIS must include all GHG emissions upstream and downstream, ie. from "well-to-wheel".

Columbia Riverkeeper: Fracked Gas-to-Methanol Refinery Permit Invalid

Summary judgment in our favour:

Shorelines Hearing Board Order, September 15, 2017

Related Articles:

AP News: Permits Invalidated for Big Washington State Methanol Plant

Columbian: Finn (Woodland Mayor) "disappointed" about methanol plant permits

Olympian: Physicians oppose methanol refinery

OPB: Ruling Invalidates Key Permits For Proposed Wash. Methanol Plant

Reflector: State rescinds Kalama methanol plant permits

Seattle Times: Board hits brakes on $1.8 billion methanol plant planned for Kalama

Tacoma News Tribune: Year after Tideflats methanol plant canceled, permits for Kalama version invalidated

TDN: State board nixes Kalama methanol permits


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