Cleanup Sites

​Scappoose Bay is a tidal estuary located along the Multnomah Channel near the town of St. Helens and the confluence with the Columbia River. Industrial use in this area dates back to the early 1900s, and primarily consisted of wood product manufacturing including paper, plywood and fiberboard. Scappoose Bay is home to numerous fish and wildlife species and has become a recreational hub for a variety of water sports including boating, fishing and kayaking. The first known inhabitants of the area were the Chinookan people who lived in villages along the banks of the bay and Multnomah Channel. The Chinookans used the area for seasonal hunting, fishing and gathering.

Scappoose Bay Sites Map 

DEQ has been overseeing environmental investigations in Scappoose Bay and the lower Multnomah Channel for over 15 years. DEQ has identified significant levels of hazardous substances at three former industrial sites: the Armstrong World Industries fiberboard plant, Pope & Talbot creosote treating facility and Boise Cascade paper mill. More information on each of these sites is provided below.

Fish Advisory at Scappoose Bay

The Oregon Health Authority has issued a health advisory regarding the amount of fish, shellfish and crayfish in Scappoose Bay and the lower Multnomah Channel that people can safely consume. OHA issues advisories when fish or shellfish tissue data verify that the levels of contaminants are above Oregon's health-based screening values.

Cleanup Sites at Scappoose Bay

Read the fact sheet about the ongoing cleanup work in Scappoose Bay and the lower Multnomah Channel. Information about the status of cleanup work at each property is provided below along with a link to the property.

Armstrong World Industries  |  St. Helens

History: The 175-acre property was used to manufacture a variety of wood fiber and mineral fiber building products from 1929 until the plant closed in May 2018. 

Current Status: DEQ began a data gaps investigation in October 2020 to gather information needed to support the feasibility study for the lowland.

Pope & Talbot  |  St. Helens

History: The site was used for wood treating from 1912 to 1960. The Port purchased the property in 1963. The Port removed the remaining structures and filled much of the site with dredge sands between 1963 and 1973.

Current Status: The remedial investigation at the site is complete. The feasibility study is currently being prepared and is expected to be submitted in April 2021.

Boise Cascade  |  St. Helens

History: Boise Cascade was a pulp and paper mill constructed in the 1920s that, until 1969, discharged its wastewater to Multnomah Channel. In 2015 the property was transferred to the City of St. Helens. Cascade Tissue Group is still leasing portions of the property for tissue paper production, although pulping operations are no longer performed at the property.

Current Status: DEQ is currently evaluating a range of remedial action alternatives presented in a draft feasibility study submitted in August 2020. DEQ expects to issue a proposed cleanup plan for public comment in 2021.