November 14, 2018 update
More than 40 people attended a community meeting at the Juanita Pohl Center on October 30 to learn about the proposed amendments to Metro’s solid waste facility license for Grimm’s Fuel Company. Metro and DEQ officials shared the next steps in the process of issuing an amended Metro license and DEQ permit for the facility.
Copies of the presentation by Metro and the audio transcript from the event can be downloaded from the links below. You can read more on Metro News about the highlights of the proposed license amendments and ways to submit public comment. The public comment deadline is 5 p.m. on Friday, Nov. 30.
October 22, 2018 update
Metro seeks public comment on proposed amendments to the license for Grimm's Fuel Company, a yard debris composting facility located in Tualatin. The proposed amendments would extend the term of the facility's license until December 31, 2022, and require operational changes to minimize and control odors.
The proposed amendments to the Metro license are shown in red:
More information regarding the composting operation of Grimm's Fuel Company can be found on Metro News.
July 25, 2018 update
More than 50 people attended a community meeting at the Sherwood Center for the Arts on July 19 to learn about the recommendations of Green Mountain Technologies for improving compost operations at Grimm’s Fuel Company, ask questions, and engage with Metro and DEQ officials on the next steps in the process of issuing a new Metro license and DEQ permit for the facility.
Copies of the presentation by Green Mountain Technologies, information about next steps and a statement from Jeff Grimm, and the audio transcrip from the event can be downloaded from links below. A Metro News story illustrating the highlights of the July 19 meeting can be found here.
June 20, 2018 update
Green Mountain Technologies has completed its assessment of the operations of Grimm’s Fuel Company. That assessment can be downloaded from the links below. Representatives from Green Mountain Technologies, along with Metro and other governments, will discuss this assessment and its recommendations at a community conversation to be held on Thursday, July 19, from 6 to 8 p.m. at the Sherwood Center for the Arts.
June 13, 2018 update
Approximately 150 people attended the first of two community conversations in Sherwood on May 7 to discuss concerns about odor, composting methods, pile sizes, traffic and other issues relating to Grimm’s Fuel Company, a compost facility located in Tualatin.
The Clean Air Safe Environment (CASE) neighborhood committee opened and set the tone for the event. Representatives from Metro, the Oregon Department of Environmental Quality, the City of Tualatin, Washington County Health Department, and Tualatin Valley Fire and Rescue were on-hand to answer questions from the audience and describe what requirements or information each public agency evaluates and considers in its distinct role.
Questions raised by audience members included concerns about:
- Whether health risk assessments have been conducted
- Aerobic vs. anaerobic composting methods and how often compost piles are turned
- Existing height requirements of compost piles
- Odors and their potential impacts on human health
- Air quality and groundwater monitoring
- The role of Grimm’s Fuel in the greater Portland area’s composting system
A transcript of the discussion at the two-hour meeting can be downloaded from the link below. Metro will host a second community conversation at the Sherwood Center for the Arts on Thursday, July 19, at which Green Mountain Technologies, a contractor hired by Metro to evaluate the operations of Grimm’s Fuel, will report its findings and recommendations for changes to the facility’s operations. Those recommendations, and further conversations with the public about them, will inform Metro’s upcoming decisions about renewal of the Grimm’s Fuel facility license later this year and the conditions placed on Grimm’s operations.
Community conversation: May 7, 2018
6 to 8 p.m. Monday, May 7
Sherwood Center for the Arts
Join a community conversation about Grimm’s Fuel Company. Metro and other government agencies that have regulatory oversight or expertise as it relates to the facility will be at the event to hear your experiences and answer questions.
May 4, 2018 update
On May 2, Tualatin Valley Fire & Rescue notified Grimm’s Fuel Company that it is in violation of Oregon Fire Code as it relates to the maximum size of compost files on its site. As a result, Grimm’s is required to reduce its pile sizes to no more than 25 feet in height by May 2019. As a condition of its license from Metro, Grimm’s Fuel Company must comply with all local codes and requirements. Metro will work closely with Grimm’s management and other government partners to ensure compliance with the fire code while minimizing off-site impacts.
April 13, 2018 update
Metro engaged a contractor, Green Mountain Technologies, to draft an assessment of the Grimm’s site that will include operational recommendations to mitigate and minimize odorous conditions. Metro anticipates receiving a first draft of the contractor’s report next month and plan to host another public event when the report is finalized in July. At that time, Metro’s contractor will present its findings and recommendations. This page will be updated as soon as the meeting time and location are set.
Feb. 23, 2018 update
Metro has hired Green Mountain Technologies, a compost consulting company based out of Bainbridge Island, Washington, to make recommendations for practice improvements and malodor mitigation at Grimm’s Fuel Company located in Tualatin, Oregon.
Metro invited representatives from the Oregon Department of Environmental Quality, city of Tualatin, Grimm’s Fuel Company, and CASE, a community organization, to evaluate the proposals submitted in response to the Request for Proposals. Metro received three proposals, and Green Mountain Technologies was unanimously selected by the evaluation team as the company with the most relevant experience.
The Green Mountain Technologies team has already been onsite at Grimm’s Fuel Company and in the surrounding community performing an onsite operational assessment and sampling ambient air for odors. Both Metro regulatory staff and Green Mountain Technologies staff were onsite and in the neighborhoods during the recent turning of the pile which took place the week of Feb. 5th.
Metro has extended the term of Grimm’s Fuel Company’s license through the end of 2018 to allow for the facility assessment to take place. Green Mountain Technologies will develop a report for Metro by June, which will include a summary of findings, alternatives and options which contemplate instituting new or alternative compost methods with a tiered options approach with minimal, moderate, and significant investment considerations for improvements/changes that could be implemented to lessen offsite impacts.
In an effort to understand community concerns, Green Mountain Technologies will be conducting a targeted telephone survey in addition to compiling and reviewing complaints submitted to Metro, DEQ, city of Tualatin, Washington County, and Grimm’s Fuel Company for the last five years.
In mid-summer, Metro will host a public information event in Tualatin where Green Mountain Technologies will share its findings and recommendations with the community.
Dec. 20, 2017 update
Metro renewed Grimm’s Fuel Company’s license to operate a compost facility for one year, Jan. 1 through Dec. 31, 2018. The license carries forward all of Grimm’s current license conditions and includes new provisions that requires Grimm’s to allow access to the facility and cooperate in good faith with a consultant to be hired by Metro to perform an independent assessment of Grimm’s composting operations. The consultant will be tasked with identifying best management practices and malodor mitigation recommendations to better inform potential license provisions for Grimm’s starting in 2019. Metro will soon be announcing the selection of a consultant to begin the site assessment work in early 2018.
Oct. 20, 2017 update
Metro is inviting proposals to perform an assessment of composting operations and make recommendations for practice improvements and malodor mitigation at Grimm’s Fuel Company located in Tualatin, Oregon.
The purpose of the assessment is to have an independent expert evaluate the operations of the Grimm’s facility and identify opportunities for improvements. In particular, Metro is seeking expert recommendations on best management practices for odor minimization and odor control at Grimm’s. The decision to perform this assessment is based on the input that Metro received during a recent public comment period for Grimm’s license renewal. That public comment period closed on June 19, 2017.
Grimm’s current license was initially set to expire on June 30 but Metro extended the term of the license until Dec. 31, 2017, to ensure that the public has an opportunity to provide input on the proposed license renewal. Metro generally approves a license renewal unless it is determined that the renewal is not in the public interest. Metro works closely with other government agencies when determine whether to issue a license to facility – in the case of Grimm’s, Metro has coordinated closely with the city of Tualatin and the Oregon Department of Environmental Quality.
Metro will again extend the term of Grimm’s license through the end of 2018 to allow for the facility assessment to take place. Metro will use the findings from this assessment to inform future licensing conditions for Grimm’s. Metro may attach conditions to a license that are necessary to protect the public’s health and the environment, address operational issues, and mitigate nuisance impacts on surrounding local communities.
Metro shared a draft Request for Proposals (RFP) for this independent review with representatives from DEQ, the city of Tualatin, Grimm’s, and CASE, a community organization, to solicit their input prior to its release. Metro will also invite those same representatives to participate in the contractor selection process.
Metro has posted the final RFP on the Oregon Procurement Information Network, and it will be open for proposers for approximately three weeks. Bid review and scoring will likely take place in early November.
May 3, 2017 update
Metro issued an amended license to Grimm's Fuel Company extending the term of its exisiting license by 6 months to allow time for careful consideration of public comments.
Grimm's Fuel Company submitted an application to renew its Metro solid waste facility license to operate a facility that receives and processes yard debris for creating compost maintaining its current Metro license authorizations and prohibitions. Grimm's Fuel Company is a full service yard debris drop off and yard products (wood chips, bark, compost and rock products) sales facility. Current operations would not change under the proposed renewal. The facility has been operating under a Metro license since 1997; the term of the proposed license would extend through June 30, 2022.
According to City of Tualatin, the proposed use is allowed.