Six States Join Fray As Backers Attempt to Revive Columbia River Coal Terminal

Washington state’s decision to deny permits to a massive coal export terminal is not going over well with some coal-heavy states and several industry groups. Six Western states and several national industry groups have lined up against Washington state in a legal battle over its decision to reject permits for the proposed terminal on the Columbia River.

Utah-based Lighthouse Resources, which operates coal mines in Montana and Wyoming, sued Washington state officials in federal court in January, alleging state officials violated federal laws in denying permits and approvals for its $680 million Millennium Bulk Terminals-Longview project.

State regulators have said they denied the project a water-quality permit because there were too many major harmful impacts including air pollution, rail safety and vehicle traffic.

KOHO Correspondent Eric Tegethoff reports Wyoming, Montana, Kansas, Utah, South Dakota and Nebraska filed a joint amicus brief last week, arguing in support of project backers and saying the case has broad implications for the export of commodities that are important to many states.

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