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Nippon Water Quality Improvements

Olympic National Park » Nippon Water Quality Improvements » Document List

Olympic National Park has released the Nippon Paper Industries USA (NPI) Water Treatment Plant Improvements Environmental Assessment (EA) for review and comment. The proposed improvements are needed to protect the mill's water supply during and after removal of the two Elwha River dams. The NPI paper mill is located on Ediz Hook in Port Angeles and is currently the sole user of the Elwha River industrial water supply line.

With the Elwha and Glines Canyon dams in place, the river's sediment flow is curtailed and the gravel, sand and much of the silt settle onto the bottom of the reservoirs created by the two dams. Once the dams are removed, the restored free-flowing river will again carry its full load of natural sediment. A number of water quality protection facilities are currently under construction or are scheduled for construction and will protect the supply during and after dam removal. In accordance with the Elwha Fisheries and Ecosystem Restoration Act of 1992, these projects must be completed before dam removal can begin.

The proposed improvements will protect the water supply for the NPI plant. The NPI paper-making process requires particularly clear water, requiring the plant to have its own water treatment facility. The Elwha Water Treatment Plant, currently under construction by the National Park Service (NPS), will remove sediment during dam removal to maintain existing turbidity levels for the City's industrial water users. The proposed modifications to the NPI water treatment plant will provide a continued supply of water that will meet the mill's requirements.

In addition to improvements to the NPI water treatment plant, an extension is proposed to an outfall pipe that discharges the sediments into the Strait of Juan de Fuca after they are removed by the water treatment plant. Since sediment levels will increase during and after dam removal, additional sediment will be released into the Strait. In order to insure proper mixing and dispersion, the sediments must be released at a greater depth than they currently are, necessitating the outfall pipe to be extended further into the Strait.

The proposed 20-inch diameter pipe would extend 1,200 feet into the Strait of Juan de Fuca, with the end of the pipe located at a depth of 30 feet.

Comments may be submitted online by visiting http://parkplanning.nps.gov, the website for the National Park Service's Planning Environment and Public Comment system. You may also send your comments to the address below. All comments must be received by June 29, 2009.

Olympic National Park – Elwha Restoration Project Office
826 East Front Street
Port Angeles, WA 98362

Fax: 360-565-1325
Website: http://parkplanning.nps.gov

NPS practice is to make all comments, including the names and addresses of respondents who provide that information, available for public review following the conclusion of the NEPA process. Individuals may request that their name and/or address be withheld from public disclosure. If you wish to do this, you must state this prominently at the beginning of your comment. Commentors using the website can make such a request by checking the box "keep my contact information private." The National Park Service will honor such requests to the extent allowable by law, but you should be aware that NPS may still be required to disclose your name and address pursuant to the Freedom of Information Act.

Contact Information
Olympic National Park – Elwha Restoration Project Office

826 East Front Street
Port Angeles, WA 98362

Fax: 360-565-1325
Website: http://parkplanning.nps.gov