The City of Oakland was rebuffed for a second time in its attempt to prevent the shipment of coal through Insight Terminal Solutions (ITS) under a contract with Oversize Bulk Commodity Terminal (OBOT) at the Oakland Army Base.
On May 26, 2020, the United States Ninth Circuit Court of Appeal upheld a May 15, 2018, ruling by US District Court Judge Vince Chhabria that the City of Oakland failed to prove that the transportation of coal through the city posed a substantial health and safety hazard to Oakland residents.
Based upon those findings, and others, Judge Chhabria ruled that the city breached its 2013 contract with OBOT, the master developer of the terminal.
ITS’s proposed compromise included: a.) building a state-of-the-art terminal with hermetically sealed loading and transporting systems to prevent dust from escaping during the processing of coal and all other commodities, b.) a community benefits package totaling $6 million a year for 66 years controlled by a citizen commission which would decide how money should be allocated, and c.) a phasing out of coal processing by 2040, which is five years ahead of Gov. Gavin Newsom’s goal of ending fossil fuels usage by 2045 as published in SB 100.
The Court ruled that after the city had entered into agreement, to prevent the shipment of coal through the terminal, it would have to prove that such shipment created a substantial health and safety risk to residents.