The pulp mill

It’s nestled off the main road into town, but you can see the Port Townsend Paper Corporation facility from Old Fort Townsend State Park. After Port Townsend’s economic boom and bust cycles of the late 19th and early 20th centuries, the mill’s arrival saved the local economy and provided needed jobs. This facility produces kraft and containerboard papers. I know there are scrubbers and various controls to protect the environment, but sometimes you can really smell this place as you drive by, as we did just yesterday. If you’ve never smelled a pulp mill, count yourself lucky.

5 thoughts on “The pulp mill”

  1. it doesnt look pretty!
    now im curious how it smells! but… in the town where i went to school was a chocolate factory and that smell was awful too….

  2. Don’t think I’ve ever smelled a pulp mill, but back when I lived in Minnesota there was a creosote plant that exuded a smell that would knock you over…ugh!!!!

  3. I grew up in Sitka, Alaska before they had rules about clean air and water for the pulp mills. The smell was horrendous when it would drift into town. The site there is now one of the top Super Fund clean up sites – there is a 12 foot thick mat of pollution imbedded on the ocean floor for miles and miles around the old, now defunct pulp mill. They can’t decide what to – if they take up the mat of pollution it is disturbed and pollution flows out of it – if they leave it, it continues to flow out into the water – and pollute it. It is a shame what we do to ourselves – and then grumble about the results.

  4. If this is a relatively new plant, I would assume that the pollution releases are minor and that the steam you see is nearly all just water vapor. But, the smell can be nasty. It is tough trading off the benefits of jobs and tax receipts against environmental and olfactory injuries.

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