Umpqua Watersheds Blog

DCPARC

DCPARC September 2019

Published September 4th, 2019 in DCPARC

DCPARC recently met with fellow activists in Columbia County, Oregon concerning logging at Camp Wilkerson County Park and purposed “Hazard” tree logging at Ora Bolmeier City Park in Vernona. We toured both parks. Unfortunately, the viewing of stumps from recently cut trees at parks is becoming all too common, but we did increase our networking. DCPARC remains committed to preventing this from becoming a common occurrence.

The Land Use Board of Appeals (LUBA,) recently remanded back to Douglas County, two land use decisions. They ruled against the board of commissioners (BOC,) decision to reopen a quarry along the North Umpqua River as well as their decision to allow 20 acre parcels (Rural Open Spaces Project,) in parts of the county. Members of DCPARC testified against both proposals. DCPARC and UW both provided financial support to the groups fighting these issues. If you are keeping score its LUBA 2, BOC 0!! Hopefully, our BOC will decide to save our much needed taxpayers’ money and not continue pursuing these issues.

DCPARC has been following the leachate and condensate a problem at the Roseburg landfill. It appears that much of the recent problems started around April the 26th when the substitute truck driver innocently took one load, of what everyone assumed to be leachate, on Friday evening to the Green Sanitary Solid Waste treatment plant. He took 5 more loads on Saturday and 5 loads on Sunday. The public is not aware that there are TWO substances in play in this event. “Leachate” is a normal product of a landfill getting rained on, “Condensate” is produced by mining for methane.  The Green Sanitary plant was contaminated subsequently with an excess amount of the latter, condensate. This condensate entered the system as a result of methane minors drilling at the landfill and mixing the highly toxic substance with the leachate. The Green Sanitary District’s treatment plant was pumped out and the mix had to be reset with new bacteria brought from a nearby treatment plant. The methane miners still have not been able to unload all the condensate. It sits in a tank at the landfill. Cost to haul the County’s leachate to Boardman and Hillsboro is $150,000. The methane miners had been releasing condensate into the leachate lines for months in small amounts. Currently there is no testing of the leachate before it is put in the truck or before it is put into the Green Sanitary District solid waste treatment system. Subsequent investigation revealed that the methane miners had dumped a massive amount of condensate into the leachate lines without notifying the landfill manager. The solution that killed the bacteria was never released into the river. It was pumped out and is sitting in a treatment tank at the water treatment plant. The Green Sanitary district is still not accepting leachate from the landfill and will not until they have assurance that it will not contain condensate. The original business filing for the Methane Mining Company, “Roseburg Energy,” used the address 10599 Old Highway 99 South, Dillard, Oregon, which is the address of Roseburg Lumber!   This is an unacceptable situation that needs to be resolved, we will continue to monitor the situation, and provide updates when necessary.

Another issue that DCPARC and UW has been monitoring is the cleaning up of the trash and spilled grease at the Downtown Merchants recycle/disposal facility behind our parking lot. UW member Michael Cook alerted us to this long standing problem which adversely affects the South Umpqua River. Our collaboration with the Downtown Roseburg Association (DRA,) of which we are members, has resulted in the immediate area being cleaned up. However, much of the storm drain remains plugged up and the area needs to be made more secure to prevent future issues. We will remain vigilant on this issue!! Thank you Michael Cook for your efforts.

We would like to thank everyone that visited our table at River Appreciation Day. Your donations were appreciated. It was a bittersweet occasion to be back at Whistlers Bend County Park and seeing all the stumps from the “hazard” trees. DCPARC promises you that we have not forgotten about this issue.

August 17th we had our 3rd Riverside Trail Clean Up session. Please join us on October 19th at 9:30 am to get involved and help clean up a part of our community. This will be our final river cleanup of the year.

We meet on the 3rd Wednesday every month, 6pm, art the Umpqua Watersheds office. Join us to talk about county issues!