Safe Shippers Say NO to Shell’s Game


Dear Safe Shippers,

The Shell Puget Sound Refinery in Anacortes is back at it.

Still wanting to expand, this time it’s about the shoreline. In October 2014 it was our clean air they wanted (we wrote letters to the Northwest Clean Air Agency regarding the draft construction permit for the Crude-by-Rail East Gate project).

Again, Safe Shippers say NO to a crude oil rail facility that has the potential of becoming a crude oil tanker export facility.

Skagit County is currently considering the shoreline variance of Shell’s application (because the construction would be located within the shoreline jurisdiction associated with Padilla Bay) to expand their oil-by-rail facility to receive 63,000 barrels of crude per day (equal to 6 train loads of crude oil per week).

Shell Anacortes is the 4th facility in our region to apply for crude-by-rail capacity expansions. Construction was completed on these neighboring facilities:

1. Tesoro Anacortes – 2012 – 50,000 barrels per day

2. BP Ferndale – 2013 – 70,000 barrels per day

3. Phillips 66 Ferndale – 2014 – 35,000 barrels per day

That’s three expansions too many. Adding another would be too much of an impact on our environment – plus, they want to go ahead without the scrutiny of an environmental review – and without considering the accumulative impacts to our region.

That’s why we need to say NO. No environmental review? No guarantee that this oil will not be shipped on tankers through our waters? Then we islanders say NO.

Please send in comments asking Skagit County to deny Shell’s application for a shoreline variance. Why? Because a marine spill of crude oil received by rail would directly and negatively impact our islands and the environment and the economy of our community. If Skagit County can’t say NO to Shell, then we in San Juan County must request that Condition 1.q. on page 24 of the “Skagit County Planning and Development Services Findings of Fact” (“The project will not involve any change in refining capacity, nor involve an increase in the amount of crude transported over marine waters” – see link below) be expanded to prohibit any vessel transports and/or exports of the crude received by rail and to prohibit any temporary storage of the crude received by rail on water/in vessels.

You may testify in person at the public hearing in Mount Vernon:

Thursday January 29 @ 10:00am

Skagit County Administrative Building

1800 Continental Place

(more info here)

Or in writing by 4:30pm, Tuesday January 27:

Please reference permit #: Shoreline Substantial Development Permit/Variance PL13-0468, Forest Practice Conversion PL14-0079


Here’s the link to the source material:

A direct link to the staff report, “Skagit County Planning and Development Services Findings of Fact”:


It’s up to us to protect our islands. Thank you, Safe Shippers, for drawing a line.