The Oregon International Port of Coos Bay’s Charleston Shipyard recently welcomed a state-of-the-art stormwater treatment system. The stormwater treatment system reduces impurities in stormwater prior to discharge into the South Slough and maintains our commitment to environmental stewardship and allows continued operation of the Charleston Shipyard in a manner consistent with Clean Boatyard programs.
The stormwater treatment system utilizes an innovative technology, Chitosan Enhanced Sand Filtration, and is one of the first of its kind on the Southern Oregon Coast. The new system will make significant improvements to the quality of the water entering the slough. With the installation of the system, chemical impacts in treated stormwater will be reduced by 50% or more. The Charleston Shipyard was originally constructed with a passive filtration system. Over time, the Oregon Department of Environmental Quality regulations for stormwater discharge quality have become increasingly more stringent. The new treatment system will allow the Port to meet all current water quality standards in the Shipyard. The system’s design also allows for expansion, which will be of significant benefit to the Port if the Shipyard’s footprint expands in the future, and will also aid in allowing the Port to efficiently meet future changes in stormwater regulations.
The new stormwater system will specifically target two metals, copper and zinc, which are typically by-products of the boat manufacturing and repair process. Additionally, the system is designed to significantly reduce the amounts of other impurities in the stormwater discharge, including petroleum related compounds and other metals which could adversely affect the environment.
The system collects water through a storm drain system and flows into four collection vaults. The water is pumped from the four vaults into two, 21,000-gallon storage tanks. From there, it is pumped to the new system for treatment. Once the water is treated, it is discharged into South Slough.
Oregon’s South Coast is one of the most beautiful places in the world. Preserving and enhancing our region’s natural assets through environmental stewardship has been, and will continue to be, of the utmost importance to the Oregon International Port of Coos Bay.