Announcements

We are accepting scoping comments until June 9, 2022.
By email to: nexteis@usace.army.mil 
By conventional mail to:
U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Portland District,
Attn: Ms. Kate Mott, P.O. Box 2946, Portland, Oregon 97208-2946

By voicemail to: 503-808-4041 and include your name and email/mailing address

For additional information or to be added to the project distribution list for updates contact:

U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Portland District
ATTN: Kate Mott
P.O. Box 2946
Portland, OR 97208-2946
Email: nexteis@usace.army.mil
Phone: (503) 808-4041

NEXT Renewable Fuels Oregon Environmental Impact Statement

The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (Corps), Portland District, has received an application for a Department of the Army permit from NEXT Renewable Fuels Oregon, LLC to construct a facility to produce renewable fuels. The proposed project requires authorization from the Corps under Section 404 of the Clean Water Act for the discharge of dredged or fill material into waters of the United States. The Corps, as the lead agency under the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA), has determined the proposed project may significantly affect the quality of the human environment and will prepare an environmental impact statement (EIS).

Background

 
Proposed development site for the NEXT Renewable Fuels Oregon project site near Clatskanie, Columbia County, Oregon.

What is NEPA? NEPA requires federal agencies to consider environmental impacts of their actions in decision making. It is important to emphasize that a Federal decision cannot be made until after the environmental review process is complete. Federal agencies’ analyses are published in a Draft EIS for public review and comment. Once the public’s comments have been reviewed, federal agencies prepare a Final EIS.

Per NEPA, an EIS assessing impacts of the proposed project on the quality of the human environment will be provided to the public for review and comment. The public will be notified when opportunities for comment arise. The Citizen's Guide to NEPA explains this law and how to effectively submit your input.

 

Project Details: The proposed project site is located at the Port Westward Industrial Park near Clatskanie, Columbia County, Oregon. The site is in Section 22, Township 8 North, Range 4 West at Latitude and Longitude: 46.167233°, -123.16195°. The applicant proposes to permanently fill 117.64 acres of wetlands and 1.79 acres of other waterways (ditches, slough) to construct a renewable fuels facility and ancillary components. The project would temporarily fill 32.03 acres of wetlands and 0.02 acre of waterways for project construction and a staging area.

The proposed project facility would be capable of producing 50,000 barrels per day of renewable diesel and other renewable fuel products. The production process would produce renewable fuels from a range of feedstocks such as various vegetable oils, used cooking oil, animal tallow, and inedible corn oil.

The proposed facility and ancillary components constructed in wetlands/waterways would include: main access road; natural gas pipeline; rail spur, ladder tracks, and rail spur access road; four new pipelines to connect with pipelines to an existing wharf; ten large product and feedstock tanks (125,000 to 225,000 barrels each); eleven smaller feedstock and process tanks (10,000 to 50,000 barrels each); pre-treatment plant; hydrogen facility; Ecofining™ units; storm and process water system; office/administration buildings/laboratory; site landscaping and fencing.

The facility would be constructed by grading and filling the site. The overall final grade would be approximately 3 ft. above the existing grade. Fill material would consist of soil and aggregate imported from a local source. Facility components would be supported with pile foundations by installing approximately 15,200, 16-inch steels piles that are 90 ft. long (each) driven by a vibratory hammer. Facility components would also be supported with ground improvement foundations by wet soil mixing known as the Deep Mixing Method to construct concrete piles. Typical construction methods would be utilized for the stripping, grading, road construction, installation of underground utilities, stormwater, and processed water systems.

The project would rely on transportation by water, railroad and road to receive materials used in production (feedstock oils, tallows, bleaching earth) and to ship renewable fuels produced from the facility. The project would require unloading up to 118 barges per year (approximately 10 per month) to receive feedstock materials and require loading up to 58 ocean going vessels per year (approximately 5 per month) to transport renewable diesel produced from the facility to market. The project would require loading and unloading up to 208 trains per year (approximately 17 per month) to receive materials used in production (feedstock and bleaching earth) and to transport renewable diesel produced from the facility to market. The project would also require loading up to 720 trucks per year (approximately 60 per month) to transport renewable diesel produced from the facility to market.

The project includes a proposed compensatory mitigation site. The compensatory mitigation would enhance 471.08 acres of wetlands that are currently used for agriculture and silviculture.

EIS Process and Opportunities for Public Comment

  1. Scoping Process: The scoping process consists of a 30-day scoping period to collect comments from the public, tribes, agencies, and others to consider throughout the EIS process. This input informs the analysis of potential effects, the suite of alternatives that meet the project’s purpose and need, and the criteria for evaluation and comparison of alternatives.
    1. Notice of Intent initiates scoping comment period. To be determined. The scoping period has not started.
    2. Scoping Meetings to be held virtually. Time and dates to be determined.
  2. Draft EIS:
    1. Notice of Availability of Draft EIS and 45-day comment period: Early 2023
    2. Public Comments
  3. Final EIS
    1. Notice of Availability of Final EIS and 30-day waiting period: Late 2023
  4. Record of Decision
    1. The Corps will prepare a Record of Decision to document our decision on the permit application, and if applicable, permission to alter a federally authorized project. The decision options available to the Corps are to issue, issue with modifications, or deny a Department of the Army permit for the proposed project and if applicable to grant or deny permission to alter a federally authorized project.