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Allowing Development of Existing Industrial Sites Along Delaware Coast

PBF Website

DOVER, Del. (AP) - The state House has overwhelmingly approved a bill opening Delaware's environmentally protected coastal zone to new heavy industry.

The measure cleared the House on a 34-to-7 vote Tuesday and now goes to the Senate

The bill, supported by Gov. John Carney establishes a permitting process for new use of 14 existing industry sites, including abandoned and polluted brownfields.

It also allows the currently prohibited transfer of bulk products such as oil, grain and minerals at sites that had docking facilities or piers before enactment of the Coastal Zone Act in 1971.

The bill would not allow certain heavy industry uses that did not exist in 1971, including oil refineries, paper and steel mills, incinerators and liquefied natural gas terminals.

The Delaware City oil refinery would remain grandfathered, however.

Don Rush is the News Director at Delmarva Public Media. An award-winning journalist, Don reports major local issues of the day, from sea level rise, to urban development, to the changing demographics of Delmarva.