|No One Happy with Planning Commission
June 21, 2008
Dean O'Hair was quoted in the San Francisco Chronicle as
saying “…company officials were pleased by Thursday's [Planning
Commission] decision,” Chevron apparently had second thoughts and,
according to the Contra Costa Times, filed an appeal, stating
that the conditions "lack a lawful nexus to the Renewal Project, are not
supported by substantial evidence in the record; are arbitrary and
capricious; interfere with operation of the refinery without
corresponding environmental benefit; and are directed to the refinery as
a whole rather than any specific impacts" of the project.”
Appeals are also expected from community groups who are not happy either with the outcome.
If there were any happy campers to be found, it would be Bay Trail advocates, who note: “Not mentioned in Katherine Tam's article is that the Planning Commission swept aside arguments by Chevron and its lawyers by voting 4/1 last night to require Chevron to help close the Bay Trail gap on its property on the south side of I-580 between Tewksbury Ave. and the Richmond/San Rafael Bridge toll plaza where an existing trail goes under the bridge toward Point Molate. The conditions adopted by the Commission in approving Chevron's Energy & Hydrogen Renewal Project require Chevron to provide (1) the needed trail easement, (2) $5 million for design & construction of the $10 million trail and (3) maintenance of facilities and equipment funded and installed by Chevron such as fencing, surveillance and alarm devices.”
Chevron appeals Richmond Planning Commission decision on refinery upgrade
Article Launched: 06/20/2008 04:42:00 PM PDT
Chevron filed a formal appeal Friday afternoon of Richmond's decision to approve its plans to upgrade its refinery with a list of provisions, some of which the oil company claims are "arbitrary and capricious."
The appeal means the proposal's fate moves to the City Council, a direction that many had predicted.
Chevron wants to replace its hydrogen plant, power plant and reformer to refine a wider range of crude and produce 6 percent more California-grade gasoline.
The Planning Commission on Thursday night approved a permit, including a limit on the crude that runs through one piece of equipment critical in the refining process.
In its appeal, Chevron wrote that the provisions "lack a lawful nexus to the Renewal Project, are not supported by substantial evidence in the record; are arbitrary and capricious; interfere with operation of the refinery without corresponding environmental benefit; and are directed to the refinery as a whole rather than any specific impacts" of the project.
A number of environmental and community groups also disagreed with the commission's decision, saying the restriction does not provide sufficient safeguards to protect the environment and public health.
They had lobbied for more comprehensive crude restrictions that would have limited specific components of the crude oil. They said they will appeal, too.
Appeals already have been filed on a related issue. Both Chevron and its opponents are appealing the Planning Commission's June 5 decision to certify the project's environmental impact report, though for different reasons. The EIR is key because officials could not have granted a permit without approving the document.
Reach Katherine Tam at 510-262-2787 or firstname.lastname@example.org.