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Pollution Update 10-29-15

The Oregon Department of Environmental Quality (DEQ) recently fined Central Point-based LTM, Incorporated (doing business as Knife River Materials) $159,144 for polluting a tributary of the Middle Fork of the Coquille River with sediment; grading and stockpiling earthen material without a Clean Water Act permit; and placing wastes where they are likely to escape into waters of the state. LTM/Knife River’s violations stem from an excavation project on Oregon State Hwy. 42 under a contract with Oregon Department of Transportation. Approximately 200,000 cubic yards of material were excavated, then deposited and graded on sloped forest property owned by Portland-based Pacific West Timber Company (which is affiliated with Campbell Global). DEQ fined Pacific West $16,800 for its role in the situation. While the excavation, stockpiling and grading activities took place between May and November of last year, erosion was observed at the site during DEQ’s most recent visit in July, and the materials still had not been permanently stabilized as of Oct. 12. The Middle Fork of the Coquille River is home to threatened coho salmon.