Petroleum coke, an Alberta oil byproduct that ignited controversy in 2013 after being stored in four-storey piles along the river across from Windsor, may soon be returning to the Detroit River shoreline.
An application to store coke products on the riverfront just west of the Ambassador Bridge is presently being considered by the city of Detroit.
Waterfront Terminal Holdings, located at 5601 W. Jefferson Ave. is seeking permits to store both coal and all coke products, including petcoke, on the riverfront.
The same company in October gained attention of nearby residents after piling more than 15,000 tons of coke breeze — a byproduct of coal — on the riverfront.
The company’s storage yard is across the river from the foot of Brock Street and General Brock Public School on Windsor’s west side.
A hearing was held last Wednesday by the city of Detroit’s industrial review committee and a decision on the permit remains pending.
There was no indication on when a decision will be released.
“The main concern is the state does not have petcoke-specific regulations,” said Simone Sagovac , program manager at Southwest Detroit Environmental Vision and community leader for nearby residents in the community of Delray.
“Other states do have specific laws that require complete containment of petcoke from starting point to end point (of transportation and storage).”