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Public meeting Tuesday on Port Gamble cleanup plan

PORT GAMBLE — The state Department of Ecology hosts a public meeting at 5 p.m. Tuesday on the plan to cleanup the Port Gamble mill site and adjacent shoreline.

The meeting will be in the Hood Canal Vista Pavilion, 4740 NE View Drive. An open house starts at 5 p.m., followed by a presentation at 6 p.m. Public testimony will follow the presentation.

The state Department of Ecology and Pope Resources have signed an agreement, called a consent decree, outlining how Pope will clean up in-bay sediments and the shoreline near the former mill site.

Historic mill operations, wood chipping, log rafting, and storage activities contaminated upland soil and in-water sediments with wood waste and pollutants such as petroleum hydrocarbons and dioxins.

The Port Gamble Bay cleanup area includes the property where the old Pope & Talbot Inc. sawmill manufactured forest products from 1853 to 1995. It also includes property leased from the state Department of Natural Resources from 1970 to 1995. Log transfer and rafting activities took place at the leased property.

Ecology is accepting public comment on draft documents related to the cleanup. The comment period continues through Nov. 12. Draft documents include the consent decree, a draft cleanup action plan, the State Environmental Policy Act (SEPA) checklist and a draft public participation plan. The cleanup action plan details a preferred cleanup option and a schedule for the work.

The draft public participation plan describes how people can be informed about and involved in the cleanup.

View copies of the draft documents at:

— Poulsbo Library, 700 NE Lincoln St.
— Little Boston Library, 31980 Little Boston Road NE, Little Boston.
— Town of Port Gamble, House 11, 32159 Rainier Ave NE.
— Ecology’s headquarters, 300 Desmond Drive SE, Lacey. Contact Carol Dorn at 360-407-7224 or carol.dorn@ecy.wa.gov for an appointment.
— Ecology’s Port Gamble Bay web page.

To submit comments:

— Mail them to Russ McMillan, site manager, Washington Department of Ecology, Toxics Cleanup Program, P.O. Box 47600, Olympia, WA 98504-7600.

— Email them to russ.mcmillan@ecy.wa.gov.

Port Gamble Bay is one of seven priority bays identified for cleanup under the Puget Sound Initiative. That’s an effort by local, Tribal, state, and federal governments; business, agricultural and environmental communities; scientists and the public to restore and protect the health of the Sound.

 

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