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NEWS: Tar sands by-product dump on Detroit River lacks required permits

In early-March, the Council of Canadians Windsor chapter began raising concerns about a tar sands by-product – petroleum coke – being stored near the Detroit River. Today, the Windsor Star reports, “The company storing black piles of petroleum coke on the Detroit River does not have all the required permits or proper zoning to keep the product on site. Detroit Bulk Storage — which is storing the petcoke — has been told by the City of Detroit that there is outstanding paperwork required if the company wishes to store the oil sands byproduct on the riverfront site east of the Ambassador Bridge. …The company has said it will hand over the rest of the information within the next couple of days, ahead of an Michigan Department of Environmental Quality deadline, MDEQ district coordinator Andy Hartz said. …(But) Derek Coronado of the Citizens Environment Alliance … questions the backward nature of how the petcoke started piling up on the Detroit shoreline with no permits issued and no assessment of potential environmental impacts beforehand.”“MP Brian Masse (NDP — Windsor West) has launched a petition and called on Ottawa to approve having the binational International Joint Commission investigate the petcoke issue. ‘We are still waiting for a response’, he said of the federal government. ‘These guys seem to have no interest in dealing with environmental issues. We have made people aware and are getting feedback from all over the country on this. It needs a further look. There is not a lot of research on this product. When it gets called the dirtiest of dirty fuel, that’s very concerning. We will keep pushing on this.'” “Petcoke started to be produced in much greater amounts at the nearby Marathon Petroleum Corp. refinery in Detroit last fall after it completed a $2 billion upgrade which for the first time allowed it to process heavy Canadian crude oil brought in by pipeline from the Alberta oil sands. Marathon goes beyond regulations in keeping the petcoke contained or covered, but once it leaves the refinery Detroit Bulk Storage has been leaving it on open piles on the riverfront.” For more please read: Petcoke site in Detroit lacks proper zoning, permits NEWS: Windsor chapter to protest tar sands on the Detroit River