By Tiffany Sukola, June 26, 2014, Columbia Basin Herald
The Port of Moses Lake is set to acquire more than 600 acres of land from the Bureau of Reclamation, as commissioners approved a $324,000 purchase agreement with the agency this week.
The port has been working with Reclamation for the past year and a half to purchase the land, which will be used for their wastewater facilities expansion project. Port Executive Director Pat Jones said the additional land is necessary for the land application portion of their wastewater operations.
Since the late 1990s, industrial wastewater has made its way from users to a 27-million-gallon storage pond on the port’s Northwest corner until growing season, when it would be applied to nearby land.
Users of the system over the years include Chemi-Con, Moses Lake Industries, the U.S. Forest Service, SGL and Genie. However, SGL has since added another plant building and broken ground on a third one and new tenant AstaReal recently began operations.
The port began to see the need to expand their wastewater facilities as they gained more industrial tenants and experienced an increase in the volume of wastewater runoff.
Port commissioners authorized the expansion project last year and construction on a new 30-million gallon storage lagoon began in April.
The expansion project, which also includes installing pipelines to connect nearby facilities to the lagoon and upgrading the current lift station and irrigation pump station, is expected to be completed by the end of November.
The entire project is estimated to cost about $2.6 million.