02 May Supervisors to Hear Appeals of Plans to Convert Refineries into Biofuel Facilities
By Tony Hicks
Bay City News Service
The Contra Costa County Board of Supervisors will hear appeals Tuesday of county planning commission approvals of two proposals earlier this year to convert the Martinez Marathon Refinery and the Phillips 66 Refinery in Rodeo to renewable biofuel facilities.
More than a dozen environmental groups and individuals are appealing the decisions, which would stop crude oil production at the facilities in favor of repurposing the both to process renewable feedstocks into renewable diesel fuel, renewable components for blending with other transportation fuels, and renewable fuel gas.
Both projects were approved unanimously by the planning commission.
Opponents — which include the Center for Biological Diversity; Communities for a Better Environment; Richmond City Council members Claudia Jimenez, Eduardo Martinez and Gayle McLaughlin; Friends of the Earth; Natural Resources Defense Council; and San Francisco Baykeeper — say the projects’ environmental impacts reports are faulty. They also say the county isn’t mitigating significant environmental problems the projects could cause.
County staff recommends the board deny the appeals, based on the projects being consistent with the county’s general plan and both areas’ zoning, and that the project would improve air quality and reduce the amount of hazardous materials in the area.
The Contra Costa County Board of Supervisors meets at 9 a.m. Tuesday at the board chambers in the county administration building, located at 1025 Escobar Street in Martinez. The meeting can also be seen at www.contracosta.ca.gov or on Zoom, at https://cccounty-us.zoom.us/j/87344719204.