Kalama, WA: Northwest Innovation Works LLC (NWIW) welcomed the Draft Supplemental Environmental Impact Statement (DSEIS) and Supplemental Greenhouse Gas Analysis prepared by Cowlitz County and the Port of Kalama. The analysis released today provides a comprehensive assessment of net GHG emissions associated with NWIW’s proposed Kalama Manufacturing and Maritime Export Facility (KMMEF). The DSEIS also discloses Northwest Innovation Works’ commitment to mitigate 100% of the climate change causing greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions produced in Washington State in connection with the plant. The company’s unique mitigation program will continue as long as KMMEF operates.
“This GHG analysis contained in the independent environmental review provides an authoritative, factual foundation for decision makers and stakeholders,” said Kent Caputo, NWIW’s Chief Commercial Officer and General Counsel. “The experts’ independent findings confirm the significant positive impacts the proposed Kalama facility will have in reducing global GHG emissions.” Caputo added that, “the analysis will inform the ongoing regulatory process and broader conversation driving toward new standards of environmental stewardship while creating jobs, investing in community and confronting climate change.”
Life Cycle Associates’ analysis examines KMMEF from a global to a granular perspective. Every identifiable individual source of GHG emissions beginning with the supply of KMMEF’s natural gas feedstock to the plant’s construction, manufacturing, and delivery of the final product was tabulated. The comprehensive study also includes a review of the high GHG emitting profiles of coal-based methanol production in China. Life Cycle Associates (LCA) then evaluated these comprehensive data sets using the same state-of-the-art computer model employed by regulatory authorities and international bodies.
The report’s findings are striking. The team at LCA concludes that by displacing methanol production from coal-based plants in China, production of methanol at the proposed Kalama facility will: “… result in net GHG reductions ranging from 9.7 to 12.6 million tonnes CO2/year.” In LCA’s chosen baseline scenario, the amount of annual emissions the Kalama methanol plant would remove from the atmosphere is equivalent to taking approximately 2.2 million cars off the road.
LCA also examines NWIW’s role in meeting the rapidly growing demand for methanol in China. Methanol shipped from the Kalama plant will be used to produce olefins, a building block in the manufacture of thousands of products used daily, such as building materials, foams, resins, plastics, paints, polyester, textiles, and a variety of health products. Supplying China’s chemical industry enables the production of goods sold to consumers around the world. The Kalama plant represents a major step in decarbonizing the global economy.
The report notes how quickly KMMEF would drive global methanol markets toward lower GHG emissions. The authors explain how NWIW will be among the lowest cost producers – even after shipping its product across the Pacific. “The KMMEF,” Life Cycle Associates concludes, “represents the lowest GHG methanol to olefin production at a scale sufficient to impact markets and displace higher emitting alternatives.”
“It is no exaggeration,” noted Vee Godley, NWIW’s Chief Development Officer, “the life cycle analysis demonstrates that our plant will deliver, by far, the single largest reduction of global greenhouse gases for any facility operating in our state. In displacing China’s much higher emission coal-based methanol production we will lead the market by delivering cleaner and cheaper feedstock.”
NWIW’s commitment to mitigate 100% of the plant’s associated GHG emissions within Washington, including those beyond direct operations, is unprecedented. It represents a removal of up to 970,000 metric tonnes of GHG emissions annually. The cumulative mitigation NWIW will achieve is roughly equivalent to the amount of carbon stored by 2,742,000 Douglas fir trees over their first 100 years of life.
The company’s pledge to fully offset in-state GHG builds upon already planned engineering innovations. These include deployment of the first Zero Liquid Discharge (ZLD) system on the Columbia River safeguarding it by recycling 100% of the plant’s wastewater as well as the world’s first and cleanest Ultra Low Emissions (ULE) technology for manufacturing methanol.
Godley observed how the project connects with the aspirations of residents of Southwestern Washington. “We’re working hard to reflect the values of our community and the state as a whole. We’re proud to put people to work while setting new environmental standards for manufacturing and confronting climate change. It’s time to move forward.”
For more information on the ongoing environmental review or to secure a copy of the Life Cycle Associates report, visit: https://kalamamfgfacilitysepa.com. For more information about Northwest Innovation Works and the Kalama Manufacturing and Maritime Export Facility, visit: https://nwinnovationworks.com.