Public comments to open on Blaine Marina cleanup plan

By Oliver Lazenby

The state Department of Ecology (DOE) is holding a public comment period on several draft documents about cleanup at the Blaine Marina Inc. site.

The site is at the industrial area at the end of Marine Drive.

The draft documents include a cleanup action plan, a DOE determination that the work isn’t likely to have significant adverse environmental impacts, and an amendment to the legal agreement between DOE and the Port of Bellingham.

The port leased that property to Blaine Marine, Inc. starting in the 1950s, according to a May 2015 DOE fact sheet about the site and cleanup. Blaine Marina, Inc., closed in May 2015. In 1955, the company installed three storage tanks to store gasoline and diesel fuel for dispensing at the fueling dock, and also for filling tanker trucks for delivery of home heating oil.

Soil and groundwater samples in the area have found petroleum, metals, volatile organic compounds and naphthalene. Most contamination at the site appears to be the result of an accidental fuel release in May 1990, according to the DOE fact sheet.

The documents were not yet available at press time, but will be online at ecy.wa.gov/programs/tcp/sites (search the site name bar for “Blaine Marina”). The documents can also be viewed at the Blaine Public Library and the Department of Ecology’s Bellingham and Bellevue offices. DOE is accepting comments from December 12, 2016 to January 25, 2017.

To comment, call site manager Cris Matthews at 460/715-5232, email cris.matthews@ecy.wa.gov, or send comments to Matthews with the Department of Ecology at 1440 10th Street, Suite 102, Bellingham, WA 98225.

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