Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Opponents of Chevron Upgrade Promise Lawsuit

KCBS, July 17, 2008.

Environmentalists have vowed to fight the Richmond city council’s decision to allow Chevron to upgrade equipment at its refinery.

After an emotional city council meeting that lasted until 2 a.m., the council on Thursday voted 5 – 4 in favor of an upgrade that Chevron officials said would allow them to generate less pollution and refine a wider range of oil.

Jessica Tovar of Communities for a Better Environment asserted that the environmental impact report submitted to the city was incomplete.

“The whole point of having an environmental impact report is to understand the whole scope and impact of the project,” she said. “Because that EIR was flawed and missing all kinds of data, we still don’t know what this project is all about.”

Chevron spokesman Dean O'Hare said the company’s goal is to modernize a power plant built in the 1930s, a reformer built in the 60s and a hydrogen plant that dates to the 70s.

The city council debated the upgrade project for two nights before the vote.

Tovar said her group would file its lawsuit within the next 30 days.

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