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Potlatch Corporation Issued New Discharge Permit for Lewiston Mill

Release Date: 3/11/2005
Contact Information: Mike Lidgard
(206) 553-1465

March 11, 2005

New Permit Sets Stricter Discharge Limits, Called "More Protective"

The Potlatch Corporation paper mill in Lewiston, Idaho has a brand new National Pollution Discharge Elimination System (NPDES) permit, EPA announced today.

According to Ron Kreizenbeck, Acting EPA Regional Administrator, the new Potlatch permit reflects a “state-of-the-art” approach to regulating pulp mills.

“The Potlatch permit will benefit the people of Idaho, Washington, and Oregon and protect their shared natural resources." said Kreizenbeck. “Our goal was to issue a permit that protects water quality as well as endangered fish. We’ve achieved that goal. The permit's very narrow discharge limits reflect the findings of the most rigorous Endangered Species Act analysis ever undertaken by EPA in this program.”

EPA officials contend that as a result of the consultation between EPA, Potlatch, and the Services, measures have been included in the permit which are protective of endangered species. EPA determined, and the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service and NOAA Fisheries concurred, that the discharge would not jeopardize the continued existence of listed endangered and threatened species.

Among the key provisions in the new permit are:

* More stringent water temperature limits
* Lower dioxin limits
* Lower limits to improve dissolved oxygen in the Snake
* More rigorous monitoring requirements.

The Potlatch mill is currently operating under a permit issued in1992. The new permit will be effective on May 1, 2005.

To view the permit, see below.

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