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International paper assists neighbor

CROWN POINT - International Paper Co. has proven to be a good neighbor to Crown Point.

IP recently agreed to reduce its phosphorus discharge limit, a deal that will save Crown Point taxpayers thousands of dollars.

Crown Point Supervisor Dale French explained the state Department of Environmental Conservation allows up to 48 pounds of phosphorus a day to be discharged into this area of Lake Champlain.

That limit includes 23 pounds a day from the International Paper Ticonderoga mill, 10 pounds a day from the Ticonderoga wastewater treatment plan and 8 ounces a day from the Crown Point wastewater treatment plant.

French said Crown Point has been discharging about 11 ounces of phosphorus a day into the lake, violating the DEC limit.

State officials directed Crown Point to make changes at its wastewater treatment plant that would have cost local taxpayers about $50,000 initially and more in routine maintenance, French said.

When IP officials learned of Crown Point's dilemma, they offered to help.

In a negotiations with the state DEC, IP officials agreed to reduce the Ti mill's phosphorus discharge limit by a pound if Crown Point was allowed to increase its phosphorus discharge by 8 ounces a day.

The result is a net 8 ounce reduction in the daily phosphorus discharge into the lake and Crown Point is spared the costly alterations at its wastewater treatment plant.

"It was a great gesture on their part," French said of IP, crediting former mill manger Chris Mallon. "It shows IP is a good neighbor.

"The (Ti) mill only uses about a third of its allowance phosphorus discharge limit so it doesn't affect their operation," French added. "The state wins because the phosphorus limit has been reduced and we (Crown Point) win because we save money."

Donna Wadsworth, Ti mill manager of communications, agreed it was win-win deal.

"International Paper's Ticonderoga mill has operated our wastewater treatment plant for many years well-below the phosphorus discharge limit set by the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation," she said. "We saw this as an opportunity to assist the town of Crown Point, the mill's near neighbor on Lake Champlain, while at the same time demonstrating our commitment to the environment."

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