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EPA asks Phillips 66/Trafigura to resubmit Bluewater Terminal permits

Bluewater Terminal
Posted at 12:06 PM, Sep 06, 2022
and last updated 2022-09-06 13:15:43-04

The planned Bluewater Texas Deepwater Port near Taft was dealt a significant blow after the Environmental Protection Agency asked the Trafigura and Phillips 66 partnership to refile applications for necessary permits.

The proposed oil terminal reportedly is planned for 15 miles off the coast of Port Aransas.

The EPA issued a letter to Trafigura and Phillips 66 officials, the 50/50 partnership looking to build the massive crude facility, stating the group will need to withdraw and refile its Prevention of Significant Deterioration (PSD) preconstruction permit and title V operating permits after public comment brought up concerns.

The letter does not mention any public comment objections actions relating to the Clean Air Act (CAA) draft Notice of MACT Approval (NOMA).

In its letter, the EPA states that the public is concerned that because the project doesn't comply with National Emission Standards for Hazardous Air Pollutants (NESHAP) for Marine Tank Vessel Loading Operations (40 CFR Part 63, Subpart Y), hazardous air emissions could be released as a result. It has asked for the project to reapply with these standards in mind.

The Bluewater Terminal project proposes building two, 30-inch pipelines from an oil storage facility near Taft into the Gulf of Mexico where Very Large Crude Carriers (VLCCs) would take on full loads of oil.

Bluewater had been seen as an alternative to building a terminal on Harbor Island, a proposal which also drew ire from environmentalists.

The group has until Sept. 15 to respond to the EPA if it plans to reapply.