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Former Lumbermill Site and Co-Generation Facility

Private Client

  • Regulatory Permitting

  • Phase I Environmental Site Assessments

  • Phase II Investigations

  • Phase III Remediation

  • Ground and Surface Water Monitoring and Reporting

  • Ranch Cropping Reporting

Former Lumbermill Site and Co-Generation Facility, Loyalton, California

Stratus personnel have been providing environmental consulting services since 2002 to the current and previous owners of a former lumbermill property that includes an operating co-generation/biomass plant located in Sierra County. The property has been developed since the 1900s with various lumber milling and wood product manufacturing uses, the most recent being mill operations and co-generation activities by the prior owner and biomass generation by the current owner. Stratus personnel have been tasked with providing environmental consulting services that included regulatory permitting assistance along with environmental site assessment, investigation, and remediation services. 

Co-generation facilities were constructed at the mill in the late 1980s providing 20 megawatts of power to the lumber milling operations initially, and currently to the local power grid. Up to 50,000 gallons of process water per day (cooling tower and boiler blow-down water, and demineralization backwash water) are generated during the power production process.

In 2002, the previous owner received revised Waste Discharge Requirements (WDR) from the California Regional Water Quality Control Board (Central Valley Region) that included land application of blended process water (process water blended with surface water from the creek that passes through the property) for beneficial reuse as irrigation for the adjoining property’s alfalfa farming production.  In 2007, Stratus personnel prepared a technical memorandum providing rationale for reduction of monitoring requirements contained in the 2002 WDR, that resulted in a revised Monitoring and Reporting Program (MRP) issued in 2010 with fewer monitored constituents, and allowed for destruction of six of the 13 monitoring wells existing on the site.  Stratus personnel have also been providing quarterly and annual ground and surface water monitoring and annual ranch cropping reporting since 2002 as required in the MRP that was developed for the site.

In addition to the scheduled monitoring reporting support Stratus continues to provide for the property, Stratus personnel have also provided remediation services involving the excavation of petroleum hydrocarbon impacted soil near the former milling facilities, on the Northern portion of the property.  In 2017 Stratus was also tasked with the preparation of a Phase I Environmental Site Assessment to facilitate the sale of the property to its now current owner.  In conjunction with the site assessment tasks, Stratus also provided consulting services that included regulatory permitting support.  Stratus, with the help of the prior owner, compiled a spreadsheet matrix of the regulatory 

permits required for operation of the biomass generation facility, and then performed extensive research and agency communications to determine the procedures necessary to transfer the permits from the previous owner to the new owner. 

Agency permit review and regulatory oversight involved with operation of the facility included:



  • Northern Sierra Air Quality Management District Permit to Operate

  • Tile V Permit

  • Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Prevention of Significant Deterioration Permit



  • California State Water Resources Control Board (SWRCB) - General Industrial Storm Water Discharge Permit

  • Regional Water Quality Control Board - Waste Discharge Requirements/Monitoring and Reporting Program

  • SWRCB Water Rights/Diversion

  • Plumas County Superior Court Water Rights Agreement

Hazardous Materials/Containers


  • EPA - Spill Prevention, Control, and Countermeasure Plan 

  • Ammonia Risk Management Plan

  • Acutely Hazardous Materials Risk Management Plan

  • California EPA Hazardous Waste Generator ID

  • California Accidental Release Prevention Plan

  • Cal OSHA Pressure Vessels Safety Order

  • Hazardous Materials Business Plan

  • State Board of Equalization

Land Use


  • City of Loyalton

  • Sierra County

  • US Forest Service Special Use Permit and Agreements

Stratus personnel continue to provide quarterly and annual ground and surface water monitoring and annual ranch cropping reporting as required under the site’s MRP.

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