In May 2020, DEQ issued a penalty of $611,403 to Columbia Northwest Recycling, doing business as Construction Materials Recycling, also referred to as CMR, for operating a solid waste disposal site at the Westside Rock Hayden Quarry in Cornelius without a permit.
CMR has been accepting contaminated glass waste and asphalt shingle waste since at least December 2018 when DEQ first became aware of this issue. Since that time, DEQ has provided instruction to CMR on necessary steps to properly manage and dispose of the materials. CMR did prepare a Material Recovery Facility application but DEQ deemed it incomplete because the applicant had not obtained a Land Use Compatibility Statement from Washington County.
Currently, DEQ is working with Oregon Department of Geology and Mineral Industries (referred to as DOGAMI) and Washington County to address solid waste, water quality and land use concerns at the site. The site is regulated under DOGAMI Permit ID 34-0026. These three agencies prepared a presentation for the local Community Participation Organization, CPO15, on Aug. 5, 2020. View the presentation provided at the CPO15 meeting.
- Solid Waste: Establishing, operating and maintaining a disposal site at Westside Rock Hayden quarry without a permit. Read the full penalty document.
- Site reclamation: Reclaiming the site inconsistent with the approved Reclamation Plan by importing fill material without an approved clean fill plan. Read the full notice of violation.
- Water Quality: Activities impacting water quality in violation of their stormwater permit, officially referred to as a NPDES 1200-A General Permit. Read the full penalty documents from February 2020 and May 2020.
Restrictions on the Site
- Solid Waste: CMR cannot receive, process (grind) or distribute the contaminated glass waste or asphalt shingle waste. DEQ is requiring CMRling to submit a plan identifying how waste will be removed and properly disposed of.
- Site reclamation: No fill material, can be imported until DOGAMI has approved a detailed clean fill plan.
- Water Quality: Should not be releasing turbid stormwater or any wastewater to a conveyance to waters of the state.
Requirements for Compliance
- Solid Waste: Columbia NW Recycling must submit a disposal plan for DEQ review and approval, and provide list of all locations where waste has been disposed of in the quarry.
- Site reclamation: Westside Rock Hayden Quarry must submit a Clean Fill Plan to DOGAMI for review and approval.
- Water Quality: Westside Rock Hayden Quarry must update its Stormwater Pollution Control Plan to accurately reflect conditions at the site, and submit for DOGAMI review and approval a work plan for performing a groundwater investigation to determine if activities have adversely impacted the wells used by adjacent properties and the facility.
Frequently Asked Questions
As a part of the water quality violation, the quarry is required to submit a groundwater investigation plan for review and approval by DOGAMI. Upon DOGAMI's approval the quarry will implement the plan to investigate if there has been any impact to groundwater or the aquifer. Any requirements for additional testing would depend upon the results of that initial investigation.
The quarry will hire a qualified consultant to create the plan for the groundwater investigation, and that plan is subject to DOGAMI and DEQ review and approval before it can be implemented. The burden to develop and fund plans to come into compliance, like the ones described above, is placed on the violator rather than the state, and is subject to state agency review and approval to ensure that it will be protective of human health and the environment.
The glass waste on site contains plastic and metal contamination. DEQ does not consider this combination of glass, plastic and metal to be clean fill and has communicated to CMR it needs a solid waste permit to place the material in the quarry.
In order for DEQ to issue the quarry a solid waste permit, they would need to submit a complete application, which would include a Land Use Compatibility Statement from Washington County.
The quarry and CMR have appealed all of their penalties. They have the right to appeal to the Office of Administrative Hearings, which can extend the process.