Port Gamble Bay Dredging on the Way

A major cleanup project that starts this summer will dig up and remove decades-old contaminated sediments and other materials from Port Gamble Bay’s waters.

Local residents are invited to a May 27 meeting at Hood Canal Pavilion in Port Gamble to talk with Washington Department of Ecology staff about the project.

Preliminary work is expected to start in June with cleanup work slated to begin in July. The project is expected to last about two years.

For more than 140 years, the now-defunct Pope & Talbot Inc. used the site to manufacture wood products. Pope Resources, created in 1985 as an independent company from Pope & Talbot, took ownership of the mill site at that time. Pope Resources leased the facility to Pope & Talbot until the mill shut down in 1995.

Since then, the property has been used for sorting and chipping logs, and for materials handling. Historical activities at the site contaminated the mill site and in-water sediments with creosote, dioxin and wood waste.

Pope Resources will lead the cleanup effort under Ecology’s oversight.

The in-water work will remove:

  • About 6,000 creosote-coated pilings;
  • Over-water structures;
  • A total of about 70,000 cubic yards of wood waste and contaminated sediments. Wood waste located close to shore will be dredged, and remaining areas contaminated by wood waste will be capped with clean material.

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