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Corpus Christi Opposition to Offshore Oil Terminal Increases

Nueces County commissioners have joined a chorus of public opposition to a proposed crude oil loading terminal planned for the Gulf of Mexico. A resolution officially opposing Switzerland-based Trafigura’s proposal to build an offshore loading dock for crude oil was approved Jan. 7 during the commissioner’s first meeting of the new year.

Before voting to approve the resolution, however, commissioners deleted language supporting a land-based terminal on Harbor Island. The Port of Corpus Christi announced plans last month to build the new crude oil loading terminal on the small island that resides in both the Port Aransas and Aransas Pass city limits.

Trafigura’s terminal would be built 13 miles offshore from Padre Island National Seashore. A citizen-based opposition group, the Port Aransas Conservancy, has pitted the two projects against each other by supporting Trafigura’s offshore terminal and opposing the Harbor Island one. The group even ran page ads in the local daily paper supporting one against the other.

The Nueces County commissioners’ resolution included the following language to which Pct. 2 Commissioner Brent Chesney objected: “Under the full regulatory weight of state agencies, this project (Harbor Island terminal) is a safer and a far more sustainable alternative and will directly benefit Texas communities.”

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