Save Pullman

No Rezone on Wawawai road

Forbidden Symbol Illustration


Special thanks to Paul Duffau for the video showing the proposed rezone area.

We Did It!

The Port voted 2-1 on Thursday April 20th to drop their rezone attempt and not purchase the land on Wawawai Rd. Thank you to everyone who came to protests, meetings, wrote letters and told their friends. Because of everyone coming together we were able to stop this! Today we won a huge battle to Save Pullman!

No rezone under any name

January 25th of 2023, the Port entered a contract to purchase property on Sunnyside Hill next to Whispering Hills development pending rezone for a heavy industrial park. The land is currently zoned for residential and commercial.

After much resistance from the community, The Port went ahead and submitted the rezone application under another title - Industrial Research Park. They still have the intention to apply for a variance to erect a biodiesel plant.

This is yet another fabricated attempt to pull the wool over the eyes of our residence. No matter how they try to dress their pig, I mean project, their intention is still the same.

Update: March 21st AgTech OS announced that they are seeking an alternative site for their proposed facility. “The current proposed location has created overwhelming negative sentiment due to its proximity to the residential areas of Pullman. For that very reason, we will seek a more suitable location for our operation.” said Ernest Spicer, CEO of AgTech OS Inc. The Port of Whitman issued a press release March 22 stating "The Port of Whitman County is continuing with the process to rezone 88 acres on SW Old Wawawai Road in Pullman for an Industrial Research Park after private partner AgTech OS announced March 21 that it would seek an alternate location for its biofuel facility."

It should be known and understood that a private business heard our "overwhelming negative sentiment" and yet our own elected officials have chosen to continue to ignore us and move forward with their rezone attempt. NO INDUSTRIAL NEXT TO RESIDENTIAL!

Why we are Opposed


Back in February of 2023, the Port of Whitman decided amongst themselves that AgTech would be a good fit for Pullman because we are an agriculture community. The problem is that they also assumed the Pullman community would be okay with them trying to commandeer what is currently residential land to house industrial partners. Even though AgTech OS backed away, this does not mean if the Port of Whitman gets the rezone approved, they will not try to invite them back or attract other unsuitable industrial partners. Pullman should be concerned for the reasons mentioned below.

  • Air Quality: The prevailing winds in the area where the proposed industrial park will be erected would blow any exhaust air, odors, and pollutants over most of the City of Pullman. Most industrial processing involves the use of chemicals. There is real concern that the air quality would be reduced for residents of Pullman.
  • Water Usage: The Grande Ronde Aquifer loses water every year. Will the aquifer be able to keep up with the demand of industry? Will we be safe from contamination of our water?
  • Noise: Industrial processes involve the use of machinery and the transport of products to/from the facility. Machinery and trucks make noise. The City of Pullman has a noise ordinance where the quiet hours are to be from 10 PM - 7 AM. How are we to know, the Port of Whitman will not partner with an industrial company that will run 24/7, 365 days a year?
  • Traffic: The intersection of Old Wawawai and 195 is already an area of concern due to other agricultural businesses and operations that have already put many trucks traversing the area. There are trucks going in/out of the Hinrichs/Ardent Mills facility, container trucks going to/from the container lot on the corner of highway 195 & 194, and now traffic added with AGrow. The addition of trucks to that area and intersection will make for traffic challenges (accidents), increased noise (jake brakes), and air pollutants from truck exhaust.
  • Public Safety: Would our area fire and emergency services be able to protect property and people from an industrial accident and potential catastrophe?
  • Reduced Residential Property Values: Residential property values for homes placed near industrial are usually appraised at a lesser value than properties with no industrial near them. “The estimates suggest that being a mile closer to a polluting manufacturing plant reduces house values.” (Bríd Gleeson Hanna, 2007) An example of an IRP that ruined the value and further growth of an area is Foxconn in Mount Pleasant, WI. “Angry residents opposed to the project were not allowed to speak Tuesday night but could submit questions” (Fox6 News Digital Team, 2022).
  • Aesthetics: The location of the proposed plant is at one of the main entrances to the City of Pullman and Washington State University. Is the vision of an industrial facility what we want visitors, new residents, and students to see as they drive into our community?
  • Housing: In September of 2022, The City of Pullman invited an outside firm to collect data on our housing needs. The plan shows that the current zoning code correlates to the number of housing units the City will need based on population and household forecasts.
  • Future School: Near the land in question, there is a planned future elementary and middle school located at the end of Crestview Street. We do not want our children’s school to be located near an industrial facility.
  • Future Industrial Facilities: If the Port of Whitman is approved to rezone the property to industrial and the purchase of these 200 acres is finalized, the Port of Whitman may and could establish other industrial facilities on this same property. The biodiesel plant was their initial proposed tenant, and they would have tried to put the company at the location in question had AgTech not backed away. This shows the Port of Whitman will host any business that shows an interest in the industrial park, even if they will negatively impact our community. Which brings to the question, can we trust the Port of Whitman?
  • Unknown: What if the Port of Whitman is not successful due to the tenants they choose to outfit their industrial park with and must close like Red Rock in Lakeview, Oregon? What if the chosen tenants of the industrial park reduce air quality, increase noise, and have other issues? Pullman would be stuck with this industrial facility at one of the main entrances to our community and very close to residents - including children and the elderly.

Once the Port of Whitman owns the land - there will be less leverage the city and neighbors can have to object to future industrial operations and expansions on this property. Keep in mind, they have changed the name of their project multiple times now because they do not have a solid plan. In addition, we already have multiple Industrial Research Parks in Pullman.

We want the City of Pullman to stay to the Comprehensive Plan, there is other land available that is zoned industrial located by the airport area and other parts of the county. We want the Port of Whitman to use our tax dollars in a way that would help our community and not hurt our quality of life.

Forbidden Symbol Illustration


Sign the petition

(New Petition to reflect Ports change in wording)

Please Sign Both Petitions

We will turn them into the City Council for Public Comment

  • April 20, 2023-

Port Of Whitman County Commissioners End

Controversial Plan For Industrial Research Park In Pullman

  • March 28,2023-

Port Of Whitman County Commissioners Agree To See Rezone Process Through For

Controversial Industrial Research Park In Pullman

  • March 28, 2023-

Port Of Whitman County Commissioners Meeting Today To Discuss Their

Controversial Plan For An Industrial Research Park In Pullman

  • March 22, 2023-

Port Of Whitman County Continues With Controversial Rezone Request

For An Industrial Research Park In Pullman After Losing Private Partner For Biodiesel Plant

  • March 22, 2023-

Wednesday March 22nd Morning News

  • March 21, 2023-

Controversial Plan For Biodiesel Plant In Pullman Dies-AgTech OS

Looking For New Rural Palouse Site For Their Facility

  • March 21, 2023-

City Of Pullman Launches Webpage To Explain Rezone Process In Light Of

Port’s Controversial Plan To Develop A Biodiesel Plant In The City

  • March 13, 2023-

First Iteration Of Company Involved In Proposed Pullman Biodiesel Plant Being Sued In Florida

  • March 9, 2023-

City Of Pullman Requiring Port Of Whitman County To Provide More Information

About Controversial Plan For A Biodiesel Plant

  • March 5, 2023-

City Of Pullman Starts Reviewing Port Of Whitman County’s

Plan For A Biodiesel Plant Near Whispering Hills

  • March 3, 2023-

Port Now Seeking Possible Alternative Pullman Area Locations For Proposed Biodiesel Plant

While Initial Plan For Siting In The City Moves Forward

  • March 2, 2023-

SEL Founder Dr. Ed Schweitzer Corrects Port Commissioner Karl Webber’s Statement

That His Company Started With Help From Taxpayer Subsidy-Port

Touting SEL Example In Arguing For Proposed Pullman Biodiesel Plant

  • March 1, 2023-

SEL Opposing Controversial Plan For Biodiesel Plant In Pullman-Informational Session

Held-Port’s Rezone Strategy Changes

  • February 22, 2023-


Morning News Interview Part 2 With Port Of Whitman County & AgTech OS Officials

About Their Proposal To Develop A Biodiesel Plant In Pullman

  • February 21, 2023-


Morning News Interview With Port Of Whitman County & AgTech OS Officials

About Their Proposed Biodiesel Plant In Pullman Part 1

  • February 16, 2023-

Washington Governor Jay Inslee In Town Friday Morning To Discuss

Proposed Biodiesel Plant For Pullman-Meeting Closed To General Public

  • February 16, 2023-

Informational Session About Proposed Biodiesel Plant In Pullman Set For March 1st

  • February 13, 2023-

Port Of Whitman County Commissioners Continue To Move Forward With Proposal

For Biodiesel Plant In Pullman Despite Growing Opposition

  • February 10, 2023-

Port Of Whitman County Commissioners To Consider Site Plan Monday Morning

For Proposed Biodiesel Plant In Pullman

  • February 1, 2023-

Port Of Whitman County Commissioners Move Forward With Rezone Request For Proposed

Biodiesel Plant In Pullman After Hearing Opposition From Several Residents

  • January 31, 2023-

Port Of Whitman County Commissioners Set To Discuss Proposed Pullman Biodiesel Plant

During Wednesday Morning Meeting

  • January 25, 2023-

Port Of Whitman County Confirms Land Purchase On Wawawai Road

Next To Pullman City Limits Is For Proposed Biodiesel Plant

  • January 25, 2023-

Port Of Whitman County Commissioners Agree To Buy Land On Wawawai Road

For “Job Creating” Development Days After Revealing Proposed Pullman Area Biodiesel Plant

Forbidden Symbol Illustration
Industry Factory Industrial Pollution Building Icon

Get Involved

Keep Informed

Save Pullman

Contact Pullman City Council

We are all anxious to have our voices heard, however, the city has asked us to hold onto our letters until the 14 day comment period has opened. As soon as that happens you can come to this page and have links to directly email the city with your concerns. In the mean time sign the petition, join us at a protest, tell your friends and family about what is going on. We are all in this together and it is time to SAVE PULLMAN!

Contact port of whitman County

PHONE: 509-397-3791

TOLL FREE: 800-535-7678

FAX: 509-397-4758



302 N. Mill Street

Colfax, WA 99111

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