Thursday, April 23, 2009

Freshwater Pulp's does not garner Waste Water Discharge Requirements permit. DG Energy to do business as usual.

The California Regional Water Quality Control Board North Coast Region meeting concerning the waste water discharge permitting process was held Thursday April 23rd at the Fortuna River Lodge Conference Center. Freshwater Pulp was denied a continuance of permit as is for affluent discharge. DG Energy is still in compliance and will be using the affluent line as is for the future.

There was enough paperwork passed out during this meeting to keep this pulp mill running for awhile. Staff for the board gave a history report of the pulp mill's repeated violations and their rationale for termination. Not a pretty scenario for the public.

Freshwater Pulp spokesman Bob Simpson outlined the vision for the new mill. He felt LP did not market the "Totally Chlorine Free" (TCF) pulp properly and should have claimed, "Dioxin Free Pulp."

Bob also made public that "Worthy Pick" did not buy the mill, but that subsidiaries "United States Lee and Man" and "Hong Kong Lee and Man" did a complicated stock swap sale of assets.

Mr. Simpson is proposing a Pulp/Paper Tissue plant that will produce between 520 and 550 tons of TCF pulp that would be converted to a finished green "tissue" product. Theoretically, this would be 40% of the total tissue market in California.

Mr. Simpson also framed his potential business as a "Recycle Plant" that will use "Residual" chips from sawmills and tan oak "Weeds of the forest" chipping products. He gave calculations of "residual" chips from sawmills in this form, 50% of a log is turned into lumber. 35% is turned into chips. 13% is bark and the rest sawdust and shavings. His proposed new chip mix at Freshwater Pulp will be 50% Tan Oak, 40% Redwood and 10% Douglas Fir. (Pretty Standard for tissue conversion without the redwood factor.)

Mr. Simpson spoke against a "Secondary Treatment Plant" saying that their processing "Mistakes" would end up there, and he wanted to be a "Model" of compliance.

Then there was public comment. On written record against continuing the variance were:

Forest Unlimited

Northern California River Watch

Coast Action Group

Friends of Garcia River


Individuals who spoke against the continuing the variance were:

Carol Binder of Eureka: She said that visible air particles were an issue. Smoke and Ash have been observed and she claimed pulp ills were known polluters.

Patrick Eytcheson of Eureka: He said after 4 decades of a series of owners the mill has consistently been non compliant. After many complex environmental upgrades and a well financed owner in Lee and Man, the mill was not able to comply with environmental standards. He questioned what capital finances were available by the new owners and felt that it was time to pull the plug on the pulp mill.

Xandra Manns of Eureka: Was upset that environmental upgrades were not completed to this day. Violations kept happening while rules were in affect. She was offended that Tan Oaks were referred to as "weeds of the forest" and pointed out that they were in fact "Sacred to the Native Americans." She wanted the pulp mill to disappear.

None of the General public spoke in favor of the pulp mill.

When the Board considered Civil charges against Evergreen Pulp, I gave testimony of the need of the regulatory agency to take legal action and leave a "trail" for us former workers to have possible chances to garner some funds owed to our union workers. They voted yes and hopefully we can learn more of litigation in the future.

18 comments:

Fred said...

So, if I'm reading this right, both the environmentalists and Water Quality Control Board have pretty much assured the pulp mill is shut down for good regardless of market conditions?

Anonymous said...

Well, the DG plant will continue to use the pipe if they can use a pump that is 1/10th the size of the pulp mill pump to move a pipe full of water all the way from DG to the pulp mill and then the 1.5 miles out to sea. Cannot be done. Their pump moves 120k galons per day and only runs intermittently. The real plan is to use the sand dunes to receive the water in an emergency when their pump cannot do it. The DG line is 4", the pulp mill is, I believe, 36". Apparently, neither DG nor the Pulp Mill group has the money to cap the diffusers in the line so the pipe will not be capped. IMO, this is nothing more than a dog and pony show.

Anonymous said...

What part of discharging to the ocean doesn't the Water Quality Control Board understand? If the pulp mill was discharging to the dunes or the harbor it would be a different circumstance. I could understand controversy if dumping to a river also. This is the ultimate dilution so where is the problem?

Water Quality has created a mess with numerous discharge issues. If a CSD improves a waste water plant the criteria then gets changed where the discharge has to improve by a certain percentage which may not be possible and then they start the fines. Arcata and McKinleyville did upgrades and they both get fines. I don't think Eureka has done upgrades and who knows what their bod is and I haven't heard of fines for them.

Anonymous said...

There are people in Humboldt county who are in favor of jobs and industry, who are willing to see the local economy actually turn around; but these people seldom know about or are able to attend meetings.

Anonymous said...

Horse shit

Anonymous said...

So Richard

"Affluent Discharge?"

Is that like giving a buck to a panhandler?

Anonymous said...

To whom it may concern,

Freshwater, EPA & Water Quality met three weeks ago in San Francisco. During that meeting it was mutually agreed that the Evergreen NPDES permit would be revoked because it would not apply to an integrated pulp & tissue mill. EPA wrote a very nice letter stating that because Freshwater was modifying the mill, it would not be considered a new source. Rather than speculating, wouldn't it be easier to call the source?

Anonymous said...

To whom it may concern,

Freshwater Pulp, EPA and Water Quality met in San Franciso three weeks ago. During this meeting it was mutually agreed a new permit would need to be issued to Freshwater because the current permit was issued for bleach Kraft pulp. Freshwater will be a pulp & tissue plant.
Rather than speculate and spread rumors, wouldn't it be easier to contact Freshwater directly?

Anonymous said...

I see you have the normal "nuts"
here who spoke about the variance.
All you needed was Glass, Sue and
Latt and you would have had the
complete "Nut" house. Sorry, I
forgot Chris the stoner.

Anonymous said...

You should be real happy Richard. All your dumb ass pals from HCDCC just shut you down. How's those cobra payments going?

Mike Buettner said...

Just curious if any one reads post from anonymous anymore?

Anonymous said...

Always read Anon...they are
smarter than you Buettner.

Anonymous said...

A pile of cow poop is smarter than butt

UncleBubba said...

Fred is correct. It will never open again. Any restarting will require a new permit which will be very restrictive in today's green world.

Don't look for a new buyer (ACE) either, for the same reason. Many believe Mr. Simpson's intent all along was to scrap it out. I think it's a sure thing now.

Sorry workers, if you haven't signed up for retraining yet, go for it.

Also, at the WQCB meeting they voted to let the Attorney General go after Evergreen for non payment of their fines.

Anonymous said...

I tell ya Richard, you guys just
crack me up. You never get it. Here
you have all the left wing nuts
speaking aganist the variance and
you are a part of the same crap. Now you want a "trail" left for you
poor workers so that you can get money out of the former owners. All
this while your unions negotiate
for bigger benefits. What did they
do that was so wrong besides trying
to give you bums a job.

jmc said...

Anon 8:57

What they did was agree to contracts with the local Union, the state, and federal government.

Then they kept $20,000,000 profits in China and forgot everything that was in the contracts.

They broke the law.

Lied to our government about what they were doing and left a mess for the U.S.A.

Anonymous said...

Bull Shit!

Anonymous said...

If you don't like it, move to China.