Huxley College Graduate and Undergraduate Publications

College Affiliation

Huxley College of the Environment

Department or Program Affiliation

Department of Environmental Studies


In the spring of 2010 Barlean's Organic Oils, LLC. applied to Whatcom County to rezone 35 acres on their 40 acre property from rural-5 (R5A) to Light Impact Industrial (LII). The purpose the rezone is to expand their processing facilities and warehousing storage capacity. Barlean's is a fish oil and flax seed oil processing plant located in Whatcom County, WA. Specifically, Barlean's Organic Oils, LLC. headquarters and processing facilities are located on the southwest 10-acres of their 40-acre square property, northeast of the Slater Road and Lake Terrell Road junction. Barlean's is adjacent to ConocoPhillips' crude oil refinery to the west, privately owned rural county residents on the north and east, and the Lummi Nation Reservation to the south. In February of 2011, Whatcom County approved the rezone of 35 acres of the Barlean's property. Before the rezone, Barleans' processing facilities were operating under conditional use permits (CUP1993-0036, CUP1997-00002 and CUP2000-00024) and were restricted to the southwest 10 acres. The rezone changed 35 acres of Barleans' property from a R5A zone to a LII zoning designation. The zoning has been approved by the county but the buildings that Barlean's intends to construct on the rezoned land have yet to be permitted. There are four 20,000 square foot buildings Barlean's plans to add outside the originally developed 10-acre area as well as two additional pre-approved 20,000 and 5,000 square foot facilities on the existing 10 acres. These buildings will house a protein plant, dry boat storage, seed storage, packing plant, material warehousing and office space. In addition, Barlean's plans to build a 27,000 square foot, four-foot deep drainage pond on the southeast corner of the property to account for impervious surface water runoff. The drainage pond will be located within the new LII zone between a category IV wetland area and the proposed material warehousing building (Figure 4). An employee nature walk and a 25-foot wide quick growing native plant buffer is planned to the north and east sides of the rezone area to mitigate encroaching expansion toward the neighbors (Figure 4) In all, the new operational LII zone will include 35 acres, leaving a five acre triangular plot on the northeast corner of the property that will remain a R5A zone for future residential use (Figure 2).

Document Type

Environmental Impact Assessment

Subject – LCSH (for OAI)

Fish oil industry--Environmental aspects--Washington (State)--Whatcom County; Linseed oil industry--Environmental aspects--Washington (State)--Whatcom County; Environmental impact analysis--Washington (State)--Whatcom County

Subjects – Names (LCNAF)

Barlean's Organic Oils

Geographic Coverage

Whatcom County (Wash.)


Environmental impact statement


Western Washington University


Spring 2011

First Advisor

Melious, Jean O.

OCLC Number



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Environmental Studies