Cowlitz Tribe opposes coal export terminal on aboriginal lands

Members of the Cowlitz Tribe gathered at their newly-declared reservation in Washington in August Photo by Cowlitz Tribe

The Cowlitz Tribe is opposing a proposed coal export terminal on its aboriginal territory in Washington.

Neither the state nor the federal government have adequately consulted the tribe about the proposed Millennium Bulk Terminals, Chairman Bill Iyall said, KCTS9/EarthFix reported. He said environmental studies fail to address the impacts of the project.

"The draft EIS consistently understates, misrepresents and simply does not have relevant significant information," Iyall said on a conference call, KCTS9/EarthFix reported.

The tribe isn't the only one raising objections. The city council in Vancouver passed a resolution on Monday that opposes the project, The Columbian reported.

“I don’t see a benefit to our community,” council member Ty Stober said at a public meeting, the paper reported. “I see lots and lots of impacts to our community.”

Millennium plans to build the terminal at a 530-acre site along the Columbia River, where Pacific Northwest tribes retain treaty rights. It would connect to existing rail lines and ship up to 44 million tons of coal annually from Montana, Wyoming, Utah and Colorado to markets in Asia, according to news reports.

The Washington Department of Ecology and the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers have released draft studies on the project. Public meetings are being held on Monday and Tuesday in Cowlitz territory. Written comments can also be submitted through November 29.

Read More on the Story:
Cowlitz Tribe Asserts Opposition To Longview Coal Terminal (KCTS9/EarthFix 10/21)
Vancouver council votes to oppose Longview coal terminal plan (The Columbian 10/18)

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