I write regarding Sen. Tim Sheldon’s guest column on the review process for expansion of export terminals in Bellingham and Longview. It is right and proper that he weigh in on what he views as an overly long process, which he believes negatively affects Washington’s workers and economy.
My question to the senator is simple: What is your evidence that the review process is too long?
Sure, entrepreneurs want quick approvals. But there is evidence of a relationship between lax approvals and environmental disasters. How much review did projects on the Superfund list receive?
I used to live in Gainesville, Florida, home of a factory for creosote-coated telephone poles. I guess it made sense to the owner to locate the factory over the city’s water supply, but that was a really bad idea.
If the city had a review process that ensured that creosote did not gravitate to the water supply, Gainesville would not be on the Superfund list.
Absent proof the existing process takes too long, I support a well-considered review process that protects the current and future citizens of Washington, even if it results in frustration for some parties. And since when do Wyoming and Montana have a say in how Washington conducts its environmental reviews?
Finally, I note that Sen. Sheldon is identified with the Democratic Party. While anyone may self-identify with any party they choose, Sen. Sheldon has consistently backed policies that Democrats decry. He is a Democrat in name only.