SEATTLE (AP) - Local regulators say a proposed project at the Tesoro oil refinery in Washington state won't pose major direct environmental harm despite concerns raised by Native American tribes, conservation groups and others.
Tesoro Corp. is planning a $400 million project at Anacortes, including upgrades to help it meet upcoming federal gasoline emissions regulations. It wants to produce a new product xylene, a chemical compound used to make plastics and other synthetic products.
The refinery would produce up to 15,000 barrels a day of mixed xylenes for export to global markets.
The project comes amid a larger debate in the Pacific Northwest around fossil fuels. Native American tribes and environmentalists have mobilized in recent years against a series of projects that would transform the region into a gateway for oil, coal and other fossil fuels to Asia.