SPOKANE -- The fight over a new coal terminal in the Northwest came to Spokane Tuesday, and plenty of people weighed in on the proposed $600 million project near Bellingham.

The proposed terminal in Western Washington would export about 24 million tons of coal of coal from Montana and Wyoming to China.

Supporters of the terminal say it would boost the economy--adding jobs and tax revenue; opponents say it would hurt the environment, public health and quality of life because of the dust from coal shipments that would come through.

Supporters and opponents rallied Tuesday in Spokane before the fifth of seven public meetings statewide.

Several hundred people attended the meeting, and many traveled from outside the Inland Northwest to be there.

People from Montana and Idaho argued they will only get negative side effects without any of the benefits.

Project developers said the terminal would bring in approximately $5 billion a year to the U.S. economy.

A public comment period runs through Jan. 21, 2013; after that an environmental impact draft process begins.

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