Eight million metric tons. That’s how much coal the so-called Morrow Pacific coal export project proposes to move through two port terminals along the Columbia River each year. That’s more than 4,500 pounds per Oregon resident, every year, year after year after year.

Numbers of such staggering proportions can be hard to visualize. That’s where handy graphics like the following can help:
That’s right, 8 million metric tons of coal could make a pile higher than Portland’s tallest building: a heap of 549 feet tall and more than 1,500 feet wide, covering an area of roughly 29 city blocks. That helps put the Morrow Pacific export plans in perspective, I think. We’re not talking about a small amount of coal, but about a substantial volume of coal that, when burned, would meaningfully contribute to global climate change.

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