Port of Vancouver commissioners did the right thing when they voted unanimously to allow a lease for a new oil terminal. The U.S. is producing abundant crude oil that is needed to meet world demand for the variety of essential products made from crude oil. No matter what the outcome in Vancouver, Wash., supplies of crude oil are going overseas. It is not a question of “if.” The issue is, which port will have the economic benefit, the Port of Vancouver, U.S.A., Vancouver, B.C., or other ports in between?
Opponents of the terminal believe erroneously that this has something to do with “big oil.” Not true. The U.S. energy boom is the result of innovations in drilling technology by small- and medium-sized independent exploration companies through trial-and-error over many decades. In many states, they mainly drilled on private land, sharing any success with a large number of landowners standing to receive royalties from crude oil sales. The drillers and the landowners took risks and some were eventually successful, while others failed. Participation by the major oil companies came later.
Those who took risks and succeeded now need to sell their product at the best price. Those opposing them have done absolutely nothing to merit veto power.
Ann T. Donnelly