The Port of Everett wants to drege contaminated sediments in Port Gardner.

Port of Everett seeks to dredge contaminated sediment

EVERETT — The Port of Everett wants to remove contaminated sediment in Port Gardner so it can expand Pacific Terminal to handle larger cargo ships.

The state Department of Ecology has to approve the project, which the port expects to cost $10 million. Port officials say they want to have the dredging finished by 2017, at the latest.

The work is one of the first steps in the Port of Everett’s $313 million plan to extend berths to handle bigger cargo ships, which have been steadily growing for decades, by 2020. Port officials plan to add 50 feet to Pacific Terminal, making it 690 feet long, and make South Terminal 1,000 feet long.

The port also is trying to buy the former Kimberly-Clark mill site to handle more cargo moving between ships, trucks and trains.

Before Pacific Terminal can be expanded, polluted sediment has to be dredged. The contamination is left over from the lumber industry, which dominated Everett’s waterfront for most of the 20th century.

Weyerhaeuser operated a mill there until 1980. The port bought the land three years later. The state, the port and Weyerhaeuser have worked together on cleaning up the area. Ground sampling last decade found arsenic, mercury and other metals, PCBs and other toxic pollutants.

The cleanup plan has to be amended to include extending Pacific Terminal. People can comment on the new proposal until March 30. It is available on the Department of Ecology’s website for the Weyerhaeuser Mill A cleanup project and at Everett Public Library at 2702 Hoyt Ave.

Comments can be submitted to Andrew Kallus, the department’s project manager, by email at Andrew.Kallus@ecy.wa.gov or by mail to Andrew Kallus, Department of Ecology, Toxics Cleanup Program, P.O. Box 47600, Olympia, WA 98504-7600.

Dan Catchpole: 425-339-3454; dcatchpole@heraldnet.com; Twitter: @dcatchpole.

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