The Arness Septage Site in Nikiski, shown here from the air in September 1985. The site was contaminated with thousands of gallons of oil and other industry wastes. Concerns about the septage site and a new monofill waste site in the area prompted the Kenai Peninsula Borough to commission a groundwater movement study. The results will be presented at a March 23 meeting in Nikiski.

The Arness Septage Site in Nikiski, shown here from the air in September 1985. The site was contaminated with thousands of gallons of oil and other industry wastes. Concerns about the septage site and a new monofill waste site in the area prompted the Kenai Peninsula Borough to commission a groundwater movement study. The results will be presented at a March 23 meeting in Nikiski.

Results of Nikiski groundwater study to be released

  • By Rashah McChesney
  • Monday, March 9, 2015 12:06pm
  • News

A series of underground maps designed to give researchers a picture of groundwater depth and flow direction in central Nikiski have been completed.

The Kenai Peninsula Borough contracted with a private firm for the groundwater modeling study which surveyed well locations, static water levels and more than 60 wells in the area of land between the McGahan Industrial Park, the AIMM Monofill site, the Cook Inlet and the east property line of Nikiski High School.

Researchers will present their findings during a March 23 meeting at 50810 Island Lake Road in Nikiski.

The borough signed a $119,970 contract with Anchorage-based DOWL HKM to perform the study after the state awarded $150,000 for the venture in a capital budget reappropriation in 2013.

Community discussion over potential groundwater contaminants in the area was rekindled when Texas-based AIMM Technologies proposed, and ultimately built, a waste disposal site on a 1.5 acre plot that will store up to 10 million gallons of petroleum waste at the end of Halliburton Drive.

During the 15-month process of getting the project permitted, residents in the area said they were concerned that the site would join, or affect a neighboring piece of land known as the Arness Septage site.

At the septage site, Alaska Department of Environmental Conservation officials have said that at least 4,200 gallons of oil-contaminated waste, sludge and other pollutants were improperly stored.

No one knows the extent of the pollution or how much of it got into the groundwater.

The Arness Septage site was included in the survey. In addition, data from six wells built by AIMM Technologies was to be included in the model. However, project planners stressed that they would not be testing for pollutants.

“This study is not to show whether there is contamination in the area,” said DOWL HKM Public Involvement Manager Rachel Steer during a November 2014 Nikiski community meeting.

“This study could be used in the future to determine where contaminants have traveled, but this is the first step that you need to do to be able to do anything else.”

 

Reach Rashah McChesney at Rashah.mcchesney@peninsulaclarion.com

More in News

Dr. Kim Thiele stands by a wall of newspaper clippings and images of family members and precursors in his office near Kenai on Monday. (Jake Dye/Peninsula Clarion)
‘A ministry for me’

Kalifornsky doctor wraps up career after 44 years

Sen. Jesse Bjorkman, R-Nikiski, listens to testimony during a Senate Community and Regional Affairs Committee hearing on Thursday in Juneau. (Ashlyn O’Hara/Peninsula Clarion)
Bjorkman game seizure bill received warmly in Senate committee

Of the roughly 150 animals the department takes each year, an average of between one and two are determined to be wrongfully seized

A collage of photos of Nikiski North Star Elementary students taking swimming lessons at the Nikiski Pool. (Photo collages provided by Nikiski North Star Elementary)
Community effort puts 200 Nikiski North Star students through swimming lessons

The lessons covered “everything,” from basic flotation to constructing rough-but-functional life jackets out of clothing

From left, Rep. Andi Story, D-Juneau, hugs Rep. Stanley Wright, R-Anchorage, after House passage of sweeping education legislation while Rep. Maxine Dibert, D-Fairbanks, watches on Thursday, Feb. 22, 2024, in Juneau, Alaska. (Ashlyn O’Hara/Peninsula Clarion)
House passes BSA increase, with other education provisions

The bill now goes back to the Senate, where lawmakers must approve the bill as-is before it can head to the governor’s desk

Rep. Justin Ruffridge speaks about
House considers, rejects multiple school funding amendments during Wednesday floor debate

Over several hours, lawmakers considered six different increases in the Base Student Allocation to public schools

U.S. Sen. Dan Sullivan addresses members of the Alaska Legislature in the House chambers on Wednesday, Feb. 21, 2024, in Juneau, Alaska. (Mark Sabbatini/Juneau Empire)
Dismissing critics, Sullivan touts LNG project

During his annual address to the Alaska Legislature on Wednesday, the U.S. senator said state leaders should be doing everything they can to make the project successful

From left, Sen. Jesse Bjorkman, R-Nikiski, east side setnetter Ken Coleman and Konrad Jackson present information about a bill establishing a voluntary buyback program for east side setnet fishery permits during a Senate Finance Committee meeting on Monday, Feb. 19, 2024, in Juneau, Alaska. (Ashlyn O’Hara/Peninsula Clarion)
Senate committee hears setnet buyback bill

The East Side of Cook Inlet Set Net Fleet Reduction Act is sponsored by Nikiski Sen. Jesse Bjorkman

Rep. Justin Ruffridge, R-Soldotna, speaks in support of debating an omnibus education bill in the Alaska House Chambers on Monday, Feb. 19, 2024 in Juneau, Alaska. (Ashlyn O’Hara/Peninsula Clarion)
Tie vote kills early House debate on education funding

Lawmakers went into an hourslong recess that ended with adjournment until Tuesday morning

Most Read