Big Oil is trying to buy our election here in Vancouver WA, dumping hundreds of thousands of dollars and giving direct instructions to their chosen candidate. The goal: to control the Vancouver Port Commission so they can build the largest oil-by-rail terminal in the country.
For months, the city of Vancouver has been targeted by Vancouver Energy, a joint venture of oil giants Tesoro and Savage, who want to build a massive oil-by-rail terminal right on the shore of the Columbia River. The terminal would mean at least 360,000 barrels of explosive crude rolling through neighborhoods and along the Columbia River every day.
And now it could all come down to this: an election to flip the Vancouver Port Commissioner, the body that will decide the final fate of Vancouver Energy’s terminal.
The election won’t make national headlines, which is exactly how Vancouver Energy wants it: they’re taking advantage of the lack of scrutiny to completely take over the campaign of candidate Kris Greene, a longtime supporter of the terminal.
Vancouver Energy has dumped $370,000 into this election in exchange for total control of their pro-terminal candidate. Greene’s ex-campaign manager has released multiple emails showing the company is calling all the shots, writing press releases and manipulating campaign hires. They even installed their own general manager on Greene’s steering committee.
But the people of Vancouver don’t go down without a fight. Going up against Greene is Don Orange, a local business owner who has lived in Clark County for 30 years. Orange has been an outspoken advocate against the proposed oil terminal because of the threats to our health, safety, and economy.
This election is a referendum, and it’s one we need to win. If we do, we’ll have a 2-1 majority on the Port Commission, and the Commission can pull Tesoro’s lease for the terminal. Just like that.
Vancouver deserves better than Big Oil’s shady meddling, and the only way regular people can fight back against the rich and powerful is to stand together.
This terminal decision is about all of us: not just those of us living in Vancouver or even the Pacific Northwest, but everyone who lives and works along the entire rail line. We need a sweeping show of solidarity — not to mention help on the ground — to win this thing, and that means getting loud. Big Oil thrives in the dark. We need to be the sun.
If you live in the Vancouver area, you can get directly involved in winning this election! Get to know Don Orange and sign up to volunteer for the campaign here.