DON'T

SMELTER

OUR

Canadian corporation HiTest Sands wants to build a silicon smelter in your backyard.

This Newport smelter would forever harm our community by polluting our air with hundreds of tons of toxic gases each year – making people sick and driving down our property values.

the Newport
smelter is close

If HiTest has its way, the Newport smelter will be coming to our community. HiTest has already:

  • Purchased land in Newport
  • Formed a Washington LLC called PacWest Silicon to do business in our state
  • Acquired a local telephone number and PO Box
  • Hired consultants and attorneys with strong connections to the Inslee administration
  • Convinced Pend Oreille County to begin the process of 
changing the zoning designation of the smelter site to allow industrial uses
  • Convinced the Department of Ecology to begin the SEPA scoping process

HITEST DOES NOT DESERVE OUR TRUST:

Smelter illustration in Newport, Washington

WHAT WE KNOW ABOUT THE NEWPORT SMELTER’S POLLUTION

The smelter’s potential emissions are poorly understood because HiTest keeps changing the data. Original Modeling Protocol | Revised Modeling Protocol

What are the top smelter emissions?

Newport Smelter top emissions

This means the Newport smelter would be one of the largest sources of air pollution in the state of Washington. Data is based off of original modeling protocol.

WHAT THESE EMISSIONS MEAN FOR OUR COMMUNITY

firplace burning wood

The smelter would generate enough sulfur dioxide to equal 165,000 wood stoves continuously burning in Newport—24 hours a day, 7 days a week.

Car exhaust similar to smelter emission

The greenhouse gases produced by the smelter would be like having 65,000 cars driving 11,000 miles each through the streets of Newport per year.

Your Health is at risk

Exposure to air pollution from SO2, NOx, and PM affects everyone from the elderly to children. Problems include:

  • Asthma
  • Pneumonia
  • Respiratory tract infections
  • Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD)
  • Compromised immune systems
  • Bronchitis, sinusitis and frequent colds
  • Reduced intelligence
person coughing due to poor health

OUR NATURAL RESOURCES WILL BE HARMED

THE NEWPORT SMELTER
WILL HARM OUR AIR.

One of the reasons HiTest has come to Pend Oreille County is because our air quality is good and there’s room in our allowable pollution threshold to pollute. The smelter could not be built in Spokane because existing industries currently use too much of the allowable pollution there.

THE NEWPORT SMELTER WILL
INCREASE THE RISK OF ACID RAIN.

The sulfur oxides and particulate matter emitted by the smelter can contribute to acid rain. Particles can be carried over long distances by wind and then settle on ground and water, depleting nutrients in the soil and making lakes and streams acidic. The harm to water, trees and plants negatively impacts other wildlife as well.

THE NEWPORT SMELTER WILL CONTRIBUTE TO CLIMATE CHANGE

Greenhouse gases emitted from the Newport smelter would accelerate the onset of climate change in our area – leading to forest degradation and warmed temperatures that disrupt our ecosystem.

THE NEWPORT SMELTER’S ECONOMIC PROMISE IS FALSE

There’s no doubt that the Newport smelter would make HiTest rich, but how would it impact the local economy?

 

Goes against Pend Oreille County’s vision of “High Tech, High Rec.”  

The smelter is an industrial plant that uses enormous amounts of energy and is extremely hot and dirty. While the silicon produced may be used in solar technology, there is no guarantee nor is there anything “green” about the plant or silicon itself. The Newport smelter will not drive recreation, it will only harm the environment that draws citizens and tourists alike to play outdoors. This directly opposes the vision the county promotes.

Harms local businesses

The smelter will harm local businesses and industries that rely on clean air, particularly our tourism and recreation businesses. Tourists will avoid the toxic air in our area.

Deters new business.  

New businesses will no longer look to local in Newport knowing their neighbor will be a smelter.

Limits recreation opportunities.   

Poor air quality from forest fire smoke forced many of us indoors over the summer. Air quality will worsen with a smelter in town. We live in this beautiful area to enjoy the outdoors. The smelter takes away that quality of life.

New jobs don’t equal good jobs for local residents.  

The potential jobs created by the smelter are not guaranteed to Newport residents. And are these jobs we would want? Other smelters have experienced gaps in operations, leading to long periods of unemployment for workers. There are also several documented OSHA violations for poor working conditions at these smelters.

the permitting process won't protect us

Public involvement is essential to avoid these pitfalls.

 

The air quality permitting process is only designed to protect us against illegal air pollution. Don’t be fooled, all air pollution harms people and the environment.

The permitting process won’t protect us if HiTest is allowed to use inaccurate data to describe the smelter’s impacts. HiTest has been and is currently trying to use improper meteorological data to assess the smelter’s air quality impacts. If that data is used, the results cannot be trusted.

Finally, permits don’t protect us unless they are enforced. Permit enforcement is often not as good as it should be due to staffing problems, funding shortfalls and political influence.

Sources:

https://www.epa.gov/so2-pollution/sulfur-dioxide-basics#effects

 

You can protect our community

It’s time to take action.

 

Tell your local representatives to protect your family, your health and your land. Click your state below and follow directions to send an email to your area representatives.

This is a quick, easy way to make your voice heard.

Washington State, take action

Washington state residents

Idaho, take action

Idaho residents

THE OPPOSITION IS GROWING

 

Paid for by the Kalispel Tribe of Indians