Keep your eyes on the review of the Cherry Point amendments / Noisy Waters Northwest

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February 7, 2020  Dena Jensen

Don’t forget that it’s important to stay engaged in the ongoing Whatcom County Planning Commission review of the Cherry Point Comprehensive Plan and code amendments! Industry representatives and Labor Union members are definitely staying engaged. Some of their comments seek to represent themselves as the stakeholders regarding Cherry Point. There’s lots more of us, probably most of us, who are stakeholders in the health, safety, and cultural integrity of Cherry Point/Xwe’chi’eXen and we don’t want our elected officials to be losing sight of this.

Meanwhile, I just started listening the January 30, 2020 Planning Commission work session on the amendments, and wanted to share this update by Whatcom County Planning Director Mark Personius at the beginning of the meeting regarding the proposed Green Apple Renewable Fuels project that has been withdrawn. There was a nugget of Mr. Personius’s insights regarding part of the reason for the cancellation of the project that he provided in his remark, which was unusually peppered with a lot of pause words, like uh and um. From my experience on remarks that have messaging implications this, many times, has to do with trying to find particular words with which to deliver a certain message.

I did not include the pause words in the transcript of Mr. Personius’s remark below. You can listen to those at around 0:01:40 on the audio of the meeting at this link, along with the whole most-recent work session on the Cherry Point Amendments:

“I think you probably already know by now, that the Green Apple Renewable Fuels facility project, the application was withdrawn, by the applicants, so, just as we were kinda kicking off the public scoping comment period for that project. So, that project is cancelled and we’re disappointed, I think, as much as the applicant is. So just wanted to let you guys know that. I know there have been some conversations. There were conversations yesterday in Olympia at the Governor’s Office about the project and about issues surrounding the industry. And, you know it’s a difficult regulatory environment right now for the industry and so – and there’s lots of issues out there, regarding vessel traffic, and resident, Southern Resident killer whales, and the orcas and all of that. So, unfortunately that’s, I think, contributed to the cancellation of the project.

“But, we are open to working with the industry and have said so. And they’ve been very gracious about the advice and working with us up to this point in the process. So, I just kinda wanted to pass that on to you.”

Here’s a link to the Planning Commission meeting page on the Whatcom County website, with past and future meeting dates and links to meeting materials:

You can email the Planning Commissioners at this address:

Here’s a link to the Whatcom County website page with background on the Cherry Point amendments and links to public comments that have been submitted: