Union Pacific Wasco County Hearing in The Dalles

Union Pacific Wasco County Hearing in The Dalles
Smoke towers above an oil train derailment and fire in Mosier, OR, on June 3, 2016. (photographer: Paloma Ayala)

Tuesday, September 6, 2016

3:00 p.m. - 11:00 p.m.
Columbia Gorge Discovery Center
5000 Discovery Drive
The Dalles, OR 97058

Please note: This hearing date has been rescheduled twice now. Originally June 7, then July 5, and now September 6.

Union Pacific Railroad is proposing construction of four miles of mainline track through the Columbia River Gorge National Scenic Area near Mosier, OR. This would allow more and/or longer trains to pass through the Gorge and negatively impact recreation sites, wetlands, Native American cultural resources, and communities in the Gorge. The proposed new track would pass through some of the most ecologically sensitive lands in the Gorge. It would also facilitate long, heavy trains traveling at high speeds and carrying explosive crude oil bound for terminal proposed throughout the Northwest. This includes the Tesoro Savage oil terminal proposal in Vancouver, potentially the largest oil-by-rail terminal in North America.

Union Pacific has submitted an application for the new track to the Wasco County Planning Commission, but they claim it is a voluntary courtesy and that federal law preempts any local authority. This ignores the fact that the National Scenic Area Act is also federal law. Union Pacific and Wasco County need to hear from you that this expansion of rail, particularly to help facilitate dangerous oil trains, is an unacceptable threat and risk to the Columbia River Gorge and our communities.

Submit a comment now to Wasco County Planning Commission asking to deny this expansion application. Read Friends' comments here and here.

Please join us on September 6 and make your voice heard in opposition to this rail expansion – don’t let them turn our beautiful Gorge into a giant oil pipeline-on-rails.

View the application and hearing notice.

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