Skagit County released today a draft environmental impact statement, or EIS, for a proposed project at the Tesoro Anacortes Refinery. 

The draft EIS is open for public comment through May 8, according to a news release. 

An open house and public hearing is set for 4 to 8 p.m. April 17 in the Anacortes High School gym and Brodniak Hall, at 1600 20th St.

The proposal, called the Tesoro Anacortes Clean Products Upgrade Project, would enable the refinery to produce 15,000 barrels of xylene per day through the refining process and sell it as a product separate from its various fuel products.

The proposal would also reduce the amount of sulfur in fuel products processed at the refinery and capture emissions from marine vessels at the refinery dock. 

If the upgrades and new equipment included in the proposal are built, the refinery would receive up to five additional marine vessels at its dock each month.

The draft EIS examines potential environmental impacts of the proposal and what could be done to prevent or mitigate those impacts.

The draft EIS and an online "open house" with more information about the proposal is available at TesoroAnacortesEIS.com.

The draft EIS is also available for review at the Mount Vernon, Burlington, Anacortes, La Conner and Guemes Island libraries, as well as at Skagit Valley College, the college's San Juan Center and at Skagit County Planning and Development Services.

Public comments received by May 8 will be included in a final EIS, which Skagit County anticipates finishing this summer, according to the release.

The final EIS will be used as a guideline for the various agencies that would need to provide permits before the proposed project can be built.

To comment:

— Leave a voice message: 1-877-685-7356

— Mail: Tesoro Anacortes EIS, P.O. Box 21069, Seattle, 98111

— Deliver: Skagit County Planning and Development Services, 1800 Continental Place in Mount Vernon between 7:30 a.m. and 4:30 p.m. Monday through Friday

— Reporter Kimberly Cauvel: 360-416-2199, kcauvel@skagitpublishing.com, Twitter: @Kimberly_SVH, Facebook.com/bykimberlycauvel

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