Washington Dept. of Ecology fines Manke Lumber US$20,000, finds excessive amounts of copper in runoff from its Superior Wood Treating plant in Sumner

OLYMPIA, Washington , May 20, 2010 (press release) – The Washington Department of Ecology (Ecology) fined Manke Lumber Co. $20,000 for allowing excessive amounts of copper in stormwater discharged from its wood-treating plant into the White River.

The runoff violated state limits necessary to meet water quality standards outlined in the wood treating facility’s stormwater permit. Those limits are intended to prevent water pollution. Superior Wood Treating, owned by Manke Lumber, is located at 13702 Stewart Road in Sumner.

Stormwater permits for wood treatment facilities like Superior Wood Treating have been gradually implementing more stringent pollution limits to reduce toxic pollutants like copper in stormwater.

The company has invested in improvements to its site and stormwater treatment system. Yet since the plant’s stormwater permit was renewed in July 2009 with new, final limits, it has violated its copper discharge limits every month that stormwater discharged to the White River. Ecology warned Manke Lumber six times in writing about the violations and stressed the need to correct the problem.

“After receiving multiple warnings about these violations, Manke Lumber should know how clean the water leaving their site needs to be,” said Garin Schrieve, Ecology’s regional water quality program supervisor. “The White River is home to threatened and endangered salmon. Month after month of permit violations are not acceptable.”

Manke Lumber may request an Ecology review of penalty or appeal to the state Pollution Control Hearings Board within 30 days.

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