Northwest NEWS

December 14, 1998

Editorial

Deadline nears for public comment

December 17 will be an important date for Washington. It is the deadline for the public to submit comments on the Draft Environmental Impact Statement (DEIS) for the ill-conceived, poorly-designed Cross Cascades pipeline project.

   Texaco, Arco, and GATX have proposed (through Olympic Pipe Line Company) to build this new 230-mile oil pipeline through Washington state in the year 2000.

   It is important to comment on this DEIS that is biased in favor of oil industry profits. Olympic has used their DEIS to distort the spill record of both pipelines and other forms of petroleum transportation by measuring pipeline spills in barrels and other spills in gallons, making the pipeline spills look smaller. They do not study any other alternatives to building their dangerous pipeine, and they do not show any need for their project other than to reduce their own shipping costs.

   The DEIS makes it clear that the oil companies would not pass those savings on to the consumer. While other pipelines around the country (such as Alyeska in Alaska) are being updated with the most current spill detection and containment technology, the Cross Cascade's pipeline will rely on 1970s-level technology. According to the DEIS, the proposed monitoring equipment would be unable to detect a leak of up to 25,200 gallons of fuel. This pipeline will leak!

   You can still review the DEIS for this project online at www.efsec.wa.gov. Comments on the project should be submitted to Floyd Rogalski at the U.S. Forest Service; Cle Elum Ranger Station; 803 W. Second; Cle Elum, WA 98922 by Dec. 17.

Alana Cini, Seattle