Frequently Asked Questions
Key information about NWIW Kalama
Below is a brief summary of frequently asked questions. Please download our project summary for more detailed information If you do not find answers to your questions in the FAQ, please contact us for the information you need.
What is methanol and why do we need it?
Methanol, also known as wood alcohol, is a clear, colorless liquid. It is found naturally at low concentrations in some fruits and vegetables, but is produced for commercial and industrial uses from natural gas or coal. Methanol is biodegradable and non-carcinogenic, but it is poisonous to humans if ingested or absorbed in more than small amounts. Methanol is used in many consumer and industrial products but is used primarily to make materials that are used to produce medical equipment, cell phones, car and bike parts, wind turbines and solar panels.
What are the economic benefits of the project?
Economic benefits during construction
- $1.8 billion total project cost
- Approximately $660 million in local spending on construction labor, goods, and services
- $625.9 million in direct economic impact during construction
- Approximately 1000 peak construction jobs
- $57.9 million in state and local taxes
Economic benefits during operations
- 688 total jobs during operations, including 192 direct jobs and 496 indirect and induced jobs
- $21 million in annual payroll for direct jobs
- Estimated $30 to $40 million in annual tax payments to state and local authorities
*Analysis performed by ECONorthwest
What are the emissions from this project?
Almost all of the air emissions from the plant would result from the combustion of natural gas necessary for certain aspects of the process. The most significant emissions would be greenhouse gases (GHG). Smaller amounts of air pollutants also would be emitted. Washington’s requirements for preserving air quality are among the strictest in the nation, and these pollutants are subject to federal regulations as well. NWIW is committed to meeting all local, state, and federal air quality requirements. .
What are the effects to local rivers, streams and other bodies of water?
The Draft EIS found that the project would not result in significant adverse impacts to water resources. The only wastewater discharged directly to the Columbia River would be cooling water that would be treated to state water quality standards and cooled to 20 degrees Celsius (the ambient water quality standard for the Columbia River) before discharge. Stormwater generated from the production process areas would be treated before being disposed of through infiltration – no stormwater would be discharged directly into the Columbia River.