Submission Number: MBTL-EIS-0002012
Received: 11/13/2013 11:19:40 AM
Commenter: Marsha Ogilvie
Organization: City of Sandpoint
Agency: Cowlitz County, the Washington Department of Ecology, and the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers
Initiative: Millennium Bulk-Terminals Longview EIS
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The City of Sandpoint is a small north Idaho community that was recently named the most beautiful small town in America by USA Today and Rand McNally. The City is bounded by mountains on one side and Lake Pend Oreille on the other. As a result of the spectacular topography, the City has two major rail lines that pass through. Whether coal is shipped on the Burlington Northern/Montana Rail Link or the Union Pacific rail line, Sandpoint is concerned about the proposed increase in coal trains passing through our City and adjacent to our pristine lake.
The City is particularly concerned about the cumulative impacts on the citizens of Sandpoint and the water quality of the lake due to a significant daily increase of train traffic. As a result, the City of Sandpoint is requesting that the Washington State Department of Ecology, in considering the proposed new coal export terminal, host a scoping hearing that includes the City of Sandpoint and Bonner County and prepare a Programmatic Environmental Impact Statement. In the alternative, the City is requesting that a point specific Environmental Impact Statement be prepared for the City of Sandpoint.
In response to community concerns, the City of Sandpoint adopted the enclosed Resolution expressing concerns regarding increased coal train traffic in the City of Sandpoint. The City urges the Washington State Department of Ecology to take the City of Sandpoint’s concerns into consideration before making any decision on coal train permit applications.