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MDE Wants Meeting With Verso Over River Seepage

February 11th, 2020 by WCBC Radio

WCBC has obtained a copy of a letter from the Maryland Department of the Environment to Verso Operations Manager Glen Gilbert concerning the investigation into a black substance found seeping into the Potomac River near the Luke Mill last spring.

In August, Verso contracted with TRC Environmental Corporation to look into the matter, and the company passed along that report to Maryland and West Virginia officials.  The four page summary from MDE notes several data gaps, and an incomplete evaluation of the water quality near a million gallon above ground storage tank and lime kiln area, and wants to meet with Verso officials.

After the report was submitted to MDE, Verso removed the tank about a month ago, and there was a petroleum odor and free liquid observed below the tank.  Government officials note that the report does not identify where the black pulping liquor is coming from.

In short, state officials want more investigation into the seepage problem, including a complete subsurface investigation to determine the extent of contamination.

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