Boise Cascade says it might close Oregon plywood mill

Boise Cascade plywood
Photo courtesy: Boise Cascade

PORTLAND, Ore. (AP) — Boise Cascade says it may close a plywood mill in eastern Oregon at the end of the year and lay off all the 229 people who work there.

Wildfires have limited access to timber for the Elgin mill, but the company said the main factor threatening the plant is a restrictive order from the state Department of Environmental Quality regarding contamination in the plant’s wastewater.

The Oregonian/OregonLive reports Boise Cascade has filed a lawsuit to overturn the order and spokeswoman Lisa Chapman said the company is having ongoing conversation with regulators.

Harry Esteve, communications manager for the Oregon Department of Environmental Quality, said the department sought to place limits on Boise Cascade after learning of contaminants in the water that originated at the company’s landfill.