Company proposing construction of methanol plant asks for lease extension from Port of Tacoma

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TACOMA, Wash. (AP) — Backers of a methanol project are asking for a lease extension, but won’t be making their case to Port of Tacoma commissioners before a vote later this month.

The News Tribune reports the commission-approved lease covers multiple phases of the project.  Northwest Innovation Works wants to extend the feasibility period.

Port commissioners have expressed skepticism about the extension and asked the group of businesses and investors behind the $3.4 billion project to explain the need.

Port spokeswoman Tara Mattina said company and port officials are unable to meet due to schedule conflicts.

Northwest Innovation Works said in a statement that it continues to work with the port ahead of the April 25 vote.

The company plans to use natural gas to make methanol for export to China.