Minutes for May 8, 2002

4301 Hilfiker Lane, Eureka CA 95503
Tel (707) 441-4362, Fax (707) 441-4366


During 2001 the P2 committee dealt with the clean boating campaign and mercury reduction campaign in relation to the healthcare. The boating campaign is ongoing. The mercury campaign must be completed by the end of 2002, as there is EPA grant money involved. Currently, it is about half completed with the construction and demolition section still incomplete.


Peter Bloom stepped down as committee chairperson in January 2002. Tracy Wyhlidko (City of Eureka) and Vicki Frey (Dept. Fish & Game) volunteered to co-chair the committee through at least the 2002 calendar year.


Thanks to Brian Cox, Director of Environmental Health, the Humboldt County Division of Environmental Health has hired Ms. Kerry Klosterman 20 hrs per week to work specifically on the EPA Grant funded Mercury Campaign for the North Coast Pollution Prevention Committee.

Kerry was unable to attend today, but asked for input from the committee about
(1) developing a list of contractors to outreach to regarding mercury wastes,
(2) gathering data from City of Eureka and City of Arcata wastewater treatment plants regarding mercury, and from the Humboldt County Household Haz. Waste facility on mercury disposal
(3) any research you have done on Mercury, especially brochures or articles that you have found.
Please contact Kerry directly at her home office (707) 825-7865 or email her at helpmecompost@yahoo.com or kklosterman@co.humboldt.ca.us.

There was a discussion during the meeting regarding sources of environmental Mercury contamination on the North Coast. Dave Hartley from DTSC shared that Dairies may be a source of mercury due to the manometers used for milking cows. Joaquin Mariante volunteered to contact "the lady" at the local Farm Bureau to see if local dairies are still using the mercury-type manometers.

Dave Hartley also shared that Historical Lighthouses may be a source of mercury. Old-fashioned lighthouses floated the light on a pool (several gallons) of pure mercury. This mercury acted as the bearings for the lens of the rotating light. Vicki Frey volunteered to research whether any of the existing lighthouses on the North Coast contain this type of mercury light.

Bob Hipp shared that another source of environmental contamination of mercury on the North Coast may be a former gold mining and mercury processing plant at the mouth of "Little River" (north of McKinleyville), off of Clam Beach.

It was apparent from the discussion that there are numerous sources of mercury contamination to the environment. Through our mercury grant project we are attempting to educate the public, the medical community, and the construction & demolition community about easily controllable sources of mercury (such as thermometers and thermostats) for which there are readily available substitutes (such as digital thermometers and electronic thermostats).

The Construction & Demolition outreach part of the Mercury Project calls for a workshop to be held. Vanessa Metz reported that the Regional Water Quality Control Board holds yearly workshops for the construction industry on erosion & sediment control. Our committee will attempt to partner with the Water Board's workshop and include speakers about mercury. Peter Bloom suggested that Ms. Maureen Hart, the County Recycling Marketing Zone Coordinator, may also be interested in partnering on this workshop and speaking about waste diversion, recycling, non-hazardous and hazardous waste management. Vanessa Metz and Kerry Klosterman will work together to make this construction workshop a reality.

It was suggested that during the Mercury media outreach campaign (scheduled for National Pollution Prevention Week, September 16-22, 2002), something be said about mercury contamination related to fish consumption. Peter Bloom warned that the committee be careful about any fish consumption warnings we broadcast, due to likely backlash from the local fishing community. Any broadcasts will need to use reliable information sources such as Fish & Game regulations, Food & Drug Administration (FDA) warnings, etc. as the basis for the information distributed.


There are supplies for 350 clean boating bags (kits) available for assembly and distribution. Tracy Wyhlidko will assemble 50 kits for the Eureka Public Marina. Marina staff have volunteered to outreach to their boating tenants and pass out the bags.

Vicki Frey will take possession of the remaining 300 boating kits and distribute to Woodley Island Marina, Trinidad Rancheria, and possibly to Easy Landing and Johnny's Marina in King Salmon.

Trinidad Rancheria is working on an agreement to purchase equipment for waste oil & oily absorbent pad collection at the harbor in Trinidad. This process has become political, but Peter Bloom and Kerry Klosterman (who is also the recycling coordinator for City of Trinidad) are actively pursuing options. Trinidad Rancheria doesn't want to distribute the boater bags until they have a recycling option available in Trinidad.

Vicki Frey, Joaquin Mariante, Jim Brisco, and Vanessa Metz have formed a Boating Clean & Green sub-committee. They will work on distributing the boater kits by the end of the calendar year. There is a Marine Expo at Woodley Island Marina in September on the 21st or 28th, 2002. The committee held a booth at this Expo last year and distributed clean boating kits. Either Vicki or Tracy needs to contact Suzie Howser at Humboldt Bay Harbor District regarding getting a booth space at the Expo.


The Mercury project and Clean Boating project should both be completed by the end of 2002. Those in attendance at this meeting were in agreement that starting in January, 2003 the North Coast Pollution Prevention Committee will scale back to quarterly training meetings. No major projects or grant applications will be pursued by the committee in 2003. Instead, each quarterly meeting will consist of a guest speaker on a specific pollution prevention related training topic. Tracy Wyhlidko will be requesting input from the committee in November & December 2002 regarding likely training topics &/or speakers for 2003.


The wsppn conference is October 22-25, 2002 in Santa Barbara. SAVE THE DATE! There may be scholarship funding available for North Coast Pollution Prevention Committee members to attend. All committee members are encouraged to attend, as this is an excellent training opportunity.


The Department of Toxic Substances Control has published Pollution Prevention brochures, fact sheets, and a workbook for the Jewelry Manufacturing industry. Rob Ludwig brought a supply of this printed material for committee members to take and distribute to businesses in their jurisdiction.


The Department of Toxic Substances Control has published a brochure on the dangers of n-hexane. n-Hexane is a solvent that is used in automotive repair, gun shops, police & sheriff departments, bike shops, printing shops, etc. Exposure to n-hexane can lead to a carpal tunnel-like syndrome in the hands. The difference is that the lack of sensation in the hands and fingers is a result of nerve damage and occurs in both hands simultaneously.


The next meeting will be held on Friday, June 28, 2002 at 1:30 pm. Location is the Department of Fish & Game conference room at 619 Second Street, Eureka, on the corner of 2nd and H streets.


Peter Bloom
Humboldt County Division of Environmental Health
Jim Brisco
US Coast Guard, Marine Safety Officer
Vicky Frey
Calif. Fish & Game and committee co-chairperson
Dave Hartley
Cal. Dept. Toxic Substances Control, Office of Pollution Prevention
Bob Hipp
Humboldt County Division of Environmental Health
Robert Ludwig
Cal. Dept. Toxic Substances Control, Office of Pollution Prevention
Joaquin Mariante
Dept. Fish & Game, Office of Spill Response
Melissa Martel
Humboldt County Division of Environmental Health
Vanessa Metz
Calif. Coastal Commission
Lucrecia Olsen
City of Arcata
Tracy Wyhlidko
City of Eureka and committee co-chairperson

Meeting Place:
Humboldt County Division of Environmental Health
100 H Street, Suite 100, Eureka, CA 95501

Vicky Frey & Tracy Wyhlidko