NRDC Files Critical Comments on Refinery Biofuel Conversion Environmental Review Report

SAN FRANCISCO – NRDC and a coalition of partners filed technical comments on the Draft Environmental Review of the largest biofuel refinery conversion project in the world today.

The California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA) is designed to ensure that agencies consider the full range of environmental effects of large impactful projects of this nature. The comments submitted today noted a bevy of environmental issues that were not considered by Contra Costa County in its CEQA review of impacts related to the Phillips 66 Rodeo Renewed Project and the Marathon Martinez refinery renewable fuels project, both of which would convert crude oil refining process to biofuel refining.

Coalition comments flagged the likelihood of increased flaring, use of a massive amounts of food crop oils (such as soybean), and an array of other issues that point to an inadequate environmental review.

Following is reaction from Ann Alexander, senior attorney for NRDC (Natural Resources Defense Council):

“If an oil company wants you to approve the largest refining project of its kind in the world, using technology potentially prone to accidents and capable of devouring a major fraction of the country’s entire soybean oil supply, you’d better be extra certain you’ve asked the right questions before you say ‘yes.’ The County’s draft environmental impact report doesn’t even come close to asking those questions.

NRDC (Natural Resources Defense Council) is an international nonprofit environmental organization with more than 3 million members and online activists. Since 1970, our lawyers, scientists, and other environmental specialists have worked to protect the world's natural resources, public health, and the environment. NRDC has offices in New York City, Washington, D.C., Los Angeles, San Francisco, Chicago, Bozeman, MT, and Beijing. Visit us at and follow us on Twitter @NRDC.

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