The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Seattle District, has halted Gateway Pacific Terminal permitting process following careful evaluation of the project.
After taking in consideration all the information available on the project, Seattle District Commander Col. John Buck has determined that the potential impacts to the Lummi Nation’s usual and accustomed (U&A) fishing rights from the proposed project are greater than de minimis.
The Gateway Pacific deep-water marine terminal at Cherry Point in Whatcom County, being proposed by the Pacific International Terminals, is a multi-user import and export marina terminal for bulk, break-bulk and other marine cargoes.
The GPT Project initial design includes construction of new rail loop tracks, covered and open terminal storage areas, and a pier and trestle connection to the terminal storage area.
“I have thoroughly reviewed thousands of pages of submittals from the Lummi Nation and Pacific International Holdings,” said Col. Buck. “I have also reviewed my staff’s determination that the Gateway Pacific Terminal would have a greater than de minimis impact on the Lummi Nation’s U&A rights, and I have determined the project is not permittable as currently proposed.”
In 1997, Whatcom County issued a shoreline substantial development permit and a major development permit for construction and operation of the terminal. Because of changes to the size and scope of the proposal, the county determined that a new shoreline permit is required for the project.
The Corps, the state Department of Ecology and Whatcom County have conducted coordinated environmental reviews of the Pacific International applications under the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) and the State Environmental Policy Act (SEPA).