By Doug Peterson, Communications Director
The biggest Harvey polluting company, Magellan, is going to build a massive petrochemical tank terminal at Clear Lake’s front door between Highway 3 and the Gulf Freeway, presenting a flood of issues for local neighborhoods and families in Clear Lake area.
Creating a painful eyesore at the “front door” entrance to Clear Lake just north of Clear Lake City Boulevard, 58 giant tanks will be built on land that flooded so excessively in the 2015 massive May rain event that the raging flood from the Magellan site washed a car off Hwy 3 into Horsepen Bayou where the driver died after being swept away.
Several investigative stories by the Houston Chronicle and AP have spotlighted Magellan’s disastrous release of gasoline for nearly two weeks during and after Harvey. Failing storage tank roofs or faulty bottoms broke open major leaks in Harvey and are the subject of at least three enforcement actions pending against Texas companies by the state per the Chronicle.
While failing to admit the river of ½ million gallons of gas streamed into Harvey flood waters and air, Magellan is accelerating development of this new project right under Ellington Field’s final approach for a variety of jet aircraft that if too low could trigger an explosive release into Horsepen Bayou that flows past Sylvan Rodriguez Park and through residential neighborhoods to Armand Bayou.
During Harvey, shifted, broken-down Magellan tanks spilled gasoline and ultimately spewed more than 2 million pounds of air pollution — Harvey’s largest pollution incident, according to the Chronicle. 295 days later, TCEQ filed paperwork for the severe polluting “event.” Gov. Abbott suspended environmental regulations as Harvey approached and only reinstated them seven months later, which finally convinced Houston industries to review their pollution episodes.
Worse yet for Magellan, both Harris County and the state have cited it for air pollution violations. And county officials also have alleged that the terminal failed to obtain proper permits before it built or placed at least some of its terminal of petroleum storage tanks inside a coastal zone, according to the notice of violation. County engineering officials said they have been unable to locate any construction permits Magellan obtained for the tank farm in response to the Chronicle’s request.
“A company that polluted heavily during Harvey, releasing over two million pounds of pollution must not be rewarded with a new permit to double its numbers of tanks until it proves it can manage them safely,” demanded Adrian Garcia, candidate for Harris County Commissioner. “I won’t stand by, afraid to act. I’ll fight for Clear Lake residents to stop the kinds of pollution and flooding mistakes made in the past. I’m with local residents to stop this, just as they stopped the Bayport rail line and kept ‘green spaces green’.”
Join in efforts to research the issues with the Magellan Tank Terminal project, organize together to engage elected officials by telling them to stop this ill-advised project, take action!
Help stop the next Magellan Mess from ruining our community and costing home owners tens of thousands of dollars. Sign up now!