As Seattle Mayor Ed Murray tweeted on Monday, he let the Port of Seattle know that there are now complications to them allowing Shell’s offshore Arctic oil-drilling fleet a home at Terminal 5.
Speaking Monday at breakfast for Climate Solutions, Murray announced that Seattle’s Dept. of Planning and Development decided the port’s 20-year-old permit doesn’t “concur” with long-term moorage and maintenance of the drilling equipment planned for the space, according to Seattle Times reporter Daniel Beekman.
This finding, Murray says, forces the port to apply for a new permit, which will require plenty of hoop-jumping along the way.
As I reported for Engineering News-Record in February, the Port of Seattle found itself locked in a discussion about Arctic oil drilling after approving a short-term lease with Foss Maritime, whose clients include Royal Dutch Shell PLC, to use part of Terminal 5 to stage marine vessels.
The agreement with Foss, environmental groups said at the time, opens up the port to housing ships planned for Arctic oil drilling exploration. Foss Maritime has said publicly it will stage, load and outfit marine assets planned for Shell’s Arctic exploration.
According to the Seattle Times report on Monday, Murray’s comments at the breakfast fundraiser made clear he hopes that the permit requirements force the port to rethink the issue, hoping they reverse course.
The new permits, though, do not fully stop the current port plans.
Tim Newcomb is Engineering News-Record’s Pacific Northwest contributor. He also writes for Popular Mechanics, Sports Illustrated and more. You can follow him on Twitter at @tdnewcomb or visit his website here.