FAQs on our proposed new Compost Facility
We would like to clear up a few misconceptions on our proposed new compost facility in the Tualatin Stafford area. Please don’t hesitate to contact us with questions.
Q: Why is S&H proposing to do composting and mining on their Stafford Road site?
A: S&H takes in yard debris, grinds it, and sends it to Clackamas Compost Products (CCP) for composting, located in the Clackamas Industrial Area off Hwy 212/224. S&H is a co-owner of CCP, which rents land from the County and is on a month-to-month lease. The County plans to sell this land to a business that creates more jobs than the current use provides. CCP will be forced to close down or relocate.
Q: What is the status of the land use permit?
A: A conditional use permit was approved by the County Hearing Officer February 7, 2012. Four residents in the Borland/Stafford area have appealed this decision to the State Land Use Board of Appeals.
Q: What materials will the compost facility compost?
A: S&H will be allowed to compost “Green Feedstocks” as defined by Chapter 834 of the County Zoning and Development Ordinance. This includes yard debris, non-treated wood waste, vegetative food waste, produce waste, vegetative restaurant waste, vegetative food processor by-products, crop waste and livestock manure. The County does not allow composting of food waste (post-consumer, containing meat scraps or other animal products) similar to that collected by the City of Portland and composted in North Plains.
Q: Does S&H plan to put garbage into the soil mining pit?
A: The small soil mining operation will create a pit that is as much as 35’ deep, and will be reclaimed by filling with “engineered fill”, which is soil that can be compacted sufficiently to support buildings. S&H plans to prepare the site for eventual commercial/residential redevelopment. No garbage will be used to refill the mining pit.
Q: Will the compost/mining activities produce dust?
A: Dust will be kept below allowable thresholds, and will not create a health hazard. Compost is wet by nature, and does not produce dust. Mined soil may be dry in the summer, and will be misted during loading to keep the dust to a minimum. Gravel roads on site will be watered when needed to control dust.
Q: Will the composting produce odors?
A: Composting has the potential to create odors, which can be avoided if best management practices are employed. S&H has designed the composting to prevent the generation of odors. There will be no periodic turning of the compost piles, which often releases odors. Instead, undisturbed piles will receive pumped air to keep them aerated, thereby preventing the creation of unwanted anaerobic odors. The piles will be covered with finished compost to absorb any escaping odors. This is a tried and tested method that is used in urban locations across the country.
Q: Will the facility produce noise?
A: Noise from the composting and mining activities will be kept below DEQ thresholds that are determined by existing ambient noise levels. These thresholds are designed to prevent noise from being a nuisance to the closest neighbors.
Q: What other permits are needed?
A: If the County’s Conditional Use Permit approval is upheld by the Land Use Board of Appeals, then S&H will apply for a DEQ Compost Facility Permit, a grading permit, a DOGAMI (mining) permit, and a Metro license for the composting.