Downtown Camas Association recruiting community members for mill clean up advisory group

Applications due Dec. 6; advisory group will begin meeting before end of the year

CAMAS – The Downtown Camas Association (DCA) is accepting applications for a Community Advisory Group that will guide public participation during the process to investigate potential contamination at the Georgia Pacific (GP) mill site in downtown Camas.

The Community Advisory Group will supervise the DCA’s public involvement consultant’s work, provide broad community outreach, and encourage opportunities for public involvement in the cleanup process. The CAG will also review technical materials and respond to the Washington State Department of Ecology and GP regarding the cleanup process, findings, and plans.

More than a century of industrial activity at the GP paper mill in Camas has led to potential contamination in soil, sediments, and groundwater in and around the mill. Contamination could have occurred due to regular operations, spills, or leaks. Photo courtesy Downtown Camas Association
More than a century of industrial activity at the GP paper mill in Camas has led to potential contamination in soil, sediments, and groundwater in and around the mill. Contamination could have occurred due to regular operations, spills, or leaks. Photo courtesy Downtown Camas Association

“The mill has been an active part of our community for over a century, and the site continues to be key for Camas and the region,” said DCA Executive Director Carrie Schulstad. “It’s critical that we get our community involved in its future, including how any contamination is cleaned up, since this influences how the site could be redeveloped one day.

“The Advisory Group will be a big part of helping us reach all corners of the community and provide strong, informed feedback to Ecology as they investigate and plan for clean up.”

Interested community members may apply to participate in the Community Advisory Group. Advisory group applications are due Dec. 6, 2021. Visit www.downtowncamas.com/CamasWaMillInfo for more information and to apply.

Advisory group participants will be selected based on a publicly open, standardized selection process that prioritizes representation of varied lived experiences and subject matter expertise. The group is expected to meet every other month starting in December 2021 through summer 2023.

About the mill cleanup

More than a century of industrial activity at the GP paper mill in Camas has led to potential contamination in soil, sediments, and groundwater in and around the mill. Contamination could have occurred due to regular operations, spills, or leaks. In August 2021, Ecology and GP issued an Agreed Order to investigate potential contamination and evaluate how to clean it up.

GP will conduct cleanup activities in accordance with Ecology’s Toxic Cleanup Program statutes and regulations. GP has not communicated any plans to stop operations at the mill; it continues to be an active paper mill employing people in Camas.

This project is funded in part through a Public Participation Grant from the Washington State Department of Ecology.

Information provided by Downtown Camas Association.

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