Sample letter (Make it PERSONAL to your concerns – this is only to give you a framework.)



Subject:  Fire Mountain Farm Application for Biosolid Application in Yelm, WA


As a Thurston County resident, I OPPOSE the proposed application to apply Biosolids to a site in the Bald Hills area of Yelm, WA.  I DEMAND that you shall WITHDRAW your Determination of Nonsignificance (DNS) for this site.


I am concerned that there will be environmental impacts to the area from Biosolid dispersal including adverse effects to water, land and wildlife.


I am concerned for the health and safety of my family because ……………(fill in the blank with your story)…………………………….


For my reasons stated above, I am formally notifying you of my opposition to the disposal of Biosolids in our community.


In consideration for the health and well-being of my family and neighbors, please withdraw your Determination of Nonsignificance (DNS) for this site.  I ask that the Mid Mountain site Application be denied.


Thank you for your consideration and decision to deny this application from Fire Mountain Farms.



(your name and address)


Think about how your family’s health and safety could be harmed and deemed unsafe.  Give a few examples that apply to your family and home.  Be sincere and create your own examples. (also see items listed to the left here.) 

  • Make our well water unsafe through transmission of toxic chemicals, metals and drugs
  • Make the Nisqually River Salmon unsafe to eat and endanger their survival
  • Make the animals I hunt unsafe to eat (elk, deer, rabbits etc.)
  • Affect the livestock that grazes on that land
  • Bring noxious odors to my neighborhood
  • Create traffic congestion problems
  • Impact the quality of the roads I commute on
  • Create unhealthy noise levels
  • My pets roam that area
  • Migrating birds will be affected

To: Peter Lyon

Southwest Regional Manager

Washington State Department of Ecology – Solid Waste Management


 Ref: Mid Mountain Biosolids Proposal at 19724 128th Ave SE, Yelm, WA (also referenced: 20015 128th Ave SE, Yelm, WA. 98597).

 Request: Withdraw your Determination of Non-significance (DNS) for this site,  (19724 128 th Ave. SE, Yelm WA. 98597).

My Reasons:


1- A full Environmental Impact Statement was not done and should have been mandatory.  How can the proposed property — 1,000 feet from the Nisqually River in an aquifer recharge area, with surrounding wetlands/lake/ponds — be a suitable, approved site for any biosolids/sludge application?


2- Can I trust that adequate testing will be conducted to insure me that the Mid Mountain site is in compliance, when from 1995-2014 Fire Mountain Farms were cutting biosolids with sludge before they were stopped by the Department of Ecology?  That is a long time.  What are the procedures for testing on such sites? Who is doing them and how often?  How often will they be reapplying the biosolids — using up to 50 Class 8 trucks per day from March to October and possibly beyond — and contaminating our watershed?


3- I live in Yelm just upstream from this site along the Nisqually River.  I have a stream running through my property where salmon spawn, a wetland on the other side is filled with wildlife, and I drink from my well.  Please understand my concerns regarding runoff from this site impacting the salmon swimming up the Nisqually to my stream, potential toxic harm to wildlife and my family, chemicals entering our aquifer, and many other concerns.  I do not want any biosolids/sludge to be applied to any sites in this area without complete removal of contaminants.


Please view this 4 minute video clip on Puget Sound Salmon.
According to a recent study, up to 81 drugs were detected in the flesh of salmon caught in the Puget Sound. Some of the drugs include Prozac, Advil, Benadryl, Lipitor, and even cocaine. The Seattle Times reports that the levels are believed to be so high because either people in the area use more of the drugs detected, or because waste water plants are unable to fully remove the chemicals during treatment.


4 – Why are local residents, especially those living on the same street, not notified when a site is first being considered?  The SEPA checklist was filled out by Fire Mountain Farms from Onalaska on November 1, 2016, two years ago, and yet I was notified of this proposal only 3 weeks ago.  The public meeting with the Department of Ecology on January 24, 2019 in Yelm, was basically to tell us the Department of Ecology was approving the Yelm biosolids application. We had no input for two years and just 3 weeks to write our concerns, why?


I ask for you to Withdraw your Determination of Non-significance (DNS) for this site on 19724 128th Ave SE, Yelm, WA (also referenced: 20015 128th Ave SE, Yelm, WA. 98597).

Jean Sagan

P.O. Box 1348


Yelm, WA. 98597

Sent: Wednesday, February 06, 2019 9:54 PM
To: ‘
Cc: ‘‘; ‘‘; ‘
Subject: Fire Mountain Farms biosolids application –


TO:            Ms. Maia Bellon

RE:            Fire Mountain Farms Biosolids Application to DoE

Dear Ms. Maia Bellon. I am a long time resident of Thurston County. I am a Nisqually Land Trust critical habitat land steward, a Nisqually River Council participant, and I serve as a Thurston Stream Team volunteer.


I am writing you today to ask that the state Department of Ecology disapprove the Fire Mountain Farm’s application to apply sludge and biosolids on 128th Street in the Bald Hills region of Thurston County. I ask that your agency withdraw the DNS – – because it is insufficient and shows a lack of knowledge of the site’s geologic characteristics. I ask that there be a full EIS because of the wet conditions on the proposed site. I ask that a full geohydrology study be conducted prior to any agency conclusions. I have learned that biosolids could be applied starting March 1 if approval is granted. March is often when there is peak surface water conditions impacting the Bald Hills in general and on this Bald Hills site. I am concerned that run-off could head toward the Nisqually River. Adding nutrient to the river would run contrary to the Nisqually River Watershed Plan just approved this week by your office in accordance with the “Hirst” decision water law.


In my opinion, the proposed Fire Mountain Farms site needs a benchmark assessment of its soil conditions and water quality, requiring monitoring wells down to the aquifer on all sides, and especially on the Nisqually side and the Yelm side.


Wild Nisqually River Steelhead are at risk of blinking out and Chinook Salmon run upstream each season in greatly depleted numbers. The Nisqually Tribe, Washington State Fish and Wildlife, Nisqually River Council, Nisqually Land Trust, as well as many concerned area residents, are working together to restore habitat and water quality.


I ask that you give my recommendations your full consideration. Thank you.


Click here to read:

            J. Brigham Engineering Review – Yelm Biosolid Application

February 11, 2019



Washington State Department of Ecology

PO Box 47600

Olympia, Washington 98504


Attention: Peter Lyon

Solid Waste Management – Southwest Regional Office Section Manager


Subject: Fire Mountain Farms Inc. – Biosolids land application site proposed near Yelm


Dear Mr. Lyon:

I am a grateful resident of Yelm and Thurston county.  My property borders one of the parcels of land on which the company Fire Mountain Farms has filed an application with your Department to receive your authorization in the form of a permit to dump, spray and spread human biosolids (better known as biosludge).  The area of land that they have identified in their application (parcels equaling 265 acres) is located on a plateau above the Nisqually River and the Centralia Diversion Canal on the east, the Yelm Ditch to the east and north, and a lake and wetlands to the northwest. My property is located at an elevation approximately 100 feet below the proposed biosolids site and the elevation is clearly visible as a ridge bordering the entire southside of my property.  Beyond my property boundary the slope continues upward still further leading to the proposed application site. The Thurston county geodata maps clearly show the higher elevation and the sloping downward of this plateau toward the surrounding properties and river.

I would like to formally state that I am adamantly opposed to the proposal for the application of biosolids in the Yelm area located on 128th Ave. SE which Fire Mountain Farms describes as their “Mid Mountain Unit”.  I demand that you shall withdraw the Determination of Nonsignificance (DNS) that deems it not necessary to carry out an Environmental Impact Study on the 265 acres and surrounding areas that will be impacted by the application of biosolids at the Mid Mountain site.  There is too much at stake to bypass doing an EIS on this important area of land in Thurston county.


I pay taxes to the State of Washington, and to your department in particular, to protect the citizens of this great state, myself included, from the harm that would come in the form of poisoning the natural resources that belong to all of us collectively.  To allow human sewage in the form of “biosolids” to be spread on pristine, useful, and valuable land – that is perched above important water sources including the Nisqually River – and above the private wells that myself and my neighbors use for their vital drinking water – is just reprehensible and could actually constitute a crime.  Such was the case in what happened in Flint, Michigan where children and adults were unknowingly drinking lead in the water provided by the municipalities directly into their homes.  You have a responsibility to make sure that poisons, unintentional though they may be, are not released into our priceless and irreplaceable natural environment that we call home.  The biosludge could actually endanger our lives when you look at the studies done on biosludge.  They have consistently found Benadryl, Warfarin and other drugs in the biosludge that could be life-threatening to children and are certainly not meant to go into the food supply or waterways.


I attended your public hearing in Yelm on January 24th and your colleague who showed slides about biosolids even publicly admitted that water treatment facilities do not have the capability to remove narcotics, pharmaceuticals, and even medical waste that could include radioactivity (possible by-product of certain medical procedures) from the biosolids. Do we want to be watering our gardens with cocaine and crystal meth?  What about dangerous pathogens in the biosludge?  In the proposal it states that signs will be put up around the disposal site stating do not enter for 30 days.  What about birds and other animals?  Do they read signs?  Will they be hurt and carry dangerous material into our yards and water?


These biosolids could be coming into the Yelm area from other cities, towns, and municipalities from out of state for which your department has no jurisdiction over.  How can you possibly provide proper oversight to ensure that industrial wastes are not on some of the trucks transporting the sludge given the shady track record of Fire Mountain Farms where this actually occurred under their watch at other locations.


There seems to be so much left to chance in terms of eventual problems that could occur. No clear methodology has been laid out in the application documents for hazardous spills or industrial waste mistakes.  No control over what biosludge is coming from where.  Also, no understanding if our local Yelm governing authorities have been notified that up to 50 trucks of recycled human sewage could be travelling on our roads through town and up Bald Hill Road on a daily basis from March to October each year. (FMF has stipulated the possibility of trips beyond those months in the application as well.)  What are the consequences of just the traffic alone on our area?  None of it has been fully brought to the light of day with the people that this proposal will have the most impact on.  One public hearing poorly advertised at best and it is full speed ahead with biosolid disposal dumped on our community?  I say “NO” to the Dept. of Ecology ruling over my backyard.  This Determination of Nonsignificance (DNS) by your agency is a disgrace!


So, I would advise those that are making decisions for we the people to reconsider the actions they take on our behalf.  We are speaking with our letters and comments.  We are speaking with our actions.


Please withdraw the Mid Mountain DNS and say no to the proposal for applying biosolids in the Yelm area.




Amy Malik

Yelm WA 98597

Date: Monday, February 11, 2019
Subject: Withdraw your Determination of Nonsignificance (DNS) for this site.

I oppose the Yelm biosolids application at 19724 128th Ave SE, Yelm, Washington 98597.


Fire Mountain has accepted illegal sludge for 19 years without intervention, approval or analysis from the Dept of Ecology.
This resulted in its appearance in front of the Pollution Control Board for the 5th time since 2000, with the Pollution Control
Board ruling against it 3 times.  2 cases were withdrawn due to settlement; the other 3 cases ruled in Ecology’s favor.
See research below.


This proves in and of itself that Fire Mountain is neither trustworthy nor in compliance with Ecology’s standards.


Further it proves that Ecology has neither the power or protocol to protect the people and environment by verifying what is actually
in the sludge that is being dumped after the application is approved.


The sludge is not harmless.  It is not good fertilizer.  Therefore, please withdraw your Determination of Nonsignificance for this site in Yelm.


Image may contain: meme, text and outdoor

Biosolids Company Accepted Unapproved Waste for 19 Years

WORK HALTED BY ORDERS: Fire Mountain Farms, Chemical Plant, Ecology Wait on Pollution Control Ruling
There are five (5) cases pertaining to Fire Mountain in their files:  Case No: P16-132, P16-050, P14-109C, P06-032, P02-223.


Very truly yours,

Victoria Harper-Parsonson
PO Box 822
Yelm, WA  98597

Subject: Fire Mountain Farm Application for Biosolid Application in Yelm, WA
Date: Tue, 12 Feb 2019 14:56:15 -0800
From: Steve Klein
CC:, Steve Klein <>

Dear Mr. Lyon,

I am writing to request the withdrawal of the Determination of Nonsignificance for the Biosolids Application at 19724 128th Ave. SE, Yelm, WA. 98597. 

Mr. Lyon, I was a 2005 Yelm mayoral candidate and after living here 30 years, I have been actively involved in many issues here, including yet not limited to water rights, water availability, aquifer preservation, air quality, traffic and other environmental impacts. I have been host of the Yelm Community blog for 13 years informing my readers of local issues such as this.

I moved to Yelm in 1988 and became active in the 1988-1989 Seattle Sludge case, where Seattle was going to dump their biosolids on a large parcel off Bald Hill Rd.,
less than 2 miles to the SE of the current Fire Mountain Farm Application’s site. That project garnered hundreds of protesters marching on the State Capitol, which caught the attention of the Seattle media and their viewers who joined the protest.

Ultimately, that project was put on hold and then abandoned. Click here for The Olympian story from August 13, 1989:

My point:

As a Thurston County resident residing within 5 direct miles of the applicant’s site, here I am again 30 years later protesting yet another potential sludge dump in our pristine rural area. Enough of treading on SE Thurston residents!

I oppose the proposed application and request Ecology to withdraw the Determination of Nonsignificance for the Biosolids Application at 19724 128th Ave. SE, Yelm, WA. 98597.  

 As a long-time contributor and supporter to/of the Nisqually Land Trust, I am very am concerned about environmental impacts to the area from Biosolid dispersal, including adverse effects to water, land and wildlife.

In consideration for the health and well-being of my family and neighbors, the lower Nisqually River basin, and the McAllister Aquifer, I request you withdraw the Determination of Nonsignificance (DNS) for this site.


Thank you for your consideration.

Steve Klein
P. O. Box 1971
Yelm, WA 98597


February 9, 2019


Dear Senator Becker,


I am contacting you to express concerns about a permit application to apply biosolids to property near Yelm, Washington. The property is located near 128th Ave. The application has been submitted by Fire Mountain Farms from Lewis County.


I am concerned that spraying biosolids has potentially harmful effects to this sensitive area for several reasons.


First, the biosolids coming from wastewater treatment facilities remove only some contaminates, and are only tested sporadically by the Department of Ecology. Therefore, shipments of biosolids that are not safe can reach properties which seek to use the material as fertilizer.


Second, regarding the property on 128th Avenue, some water flowing off the land is only about 1,000 feet from the Nisqually River.


Third, this property is clearly a significant area regarding ecological interests as determined by Thurston County Geodata. In fact, a Critical Areas Ordinance stipulated that this area needs special protection. It is an aquifer recharge area!


Nevertheless, there has been a Determination of Nonsignificance for the property; I believe that the determination was made incorrectly and should be withdrawn.


In closing, I am opposed to a permit being issued to spray biosolids on the property mentioned above and I request that Determination of Nonsignificance be removed.




Kathleen Lillis

Yelm, WA 98597