Statement of the Bureau of Development Services on approval of a Land Use Compatibility Statement for non-fossil fuel operations at Zenith Energy

News Article
An aerial photo of fossil fuel infrastructure in NW Portland
The Bureau of Development Services approved a Land Use Compatibility Statement (LUCS) for Zenith Energy Terminal Holdings, LLC. Zenith’s LUCS application includes several proposed changes as it phases out crude oil at its Northwest Portland terminal and transitions to renewable fuels.

The issuance of a LUCS is a required step in the application process for a new Air Contaminant Discharge Permit (ACDP) and renewal of Zenith’s Air Quality Title V Permit with the Oregon Department of Environmental Quality (DEQ).

This LUCS is issued with the following commitments made by Zenith:

  • Zenith will phase out all crude oil transports through the terminal within five years.
  • Zenith will disable 8 of 44 railcar spots from any ability to unload crude oil.
  • Zenith will remove 30 storage tanks from the site over the next seven years.
  • Any new storage tanks will be used solely for renewable and non-fuel products.
  • Zenith will not exercise its existing approval from DEQ to add internal floating roofs on three existing tanks. These floating roofs would have allowed Zenith to store additional crude oil.
  • Under the ACDP, emissions of volatile organic compounds will be reduced to less than 40 tons per year. This represents a nearly 80 percent reduction from the existing 179 tons per year allowed under Zenith’s existing operating permit from DEQ.
  • Within 30 days of issuance of the ACDP by DEQ, the operations of Zenith’s asphalt refinery will cease.

In addition, Zenith agreed to several compliance measures to enforce these commitments, including:

  • Allowing City inspectors to access the terminal and confirm that railcar spots are not used to unload crude oil and confirm the disconnection of the crude oil header and removal of a segment of pipe to disable the offloading of crude oil.
  • Hiring, at Zenith’s expense, a third party to inspect, sample and test materials and report to BDS whether samples contain crude oil.
  • Allowing City inspectors on-site, immediately upon request, to confirm that no new storage tanks have been constructed.

With these commitments in place, the Bureau of Development Services determined that the proposed activities are compatible with the City of Portland’s Zoning Code and 2035 Comprehensive Plan.

A copy of the full Land Use Compatibility Statement with exhibits may be found here.


Ken Ray

Public Information Officer, Permitting & Development