Local wastewater treatment plants rise to the top

6 wastewater treatment plants in Grays Harbor and 3 in Pacific County have earned top honors from the state.

The Washington Department of Ecology honored our state’s top-performing wastewater treatment plants with the Wastewater Treatment Plant Outstanding Performance Award. They recognized 119 wastewater treatment plants across Washington that achieved full compliance with their water quality permits in 2015.

“We appreciate the extraordinary level of effort plant operators demonstrated throughout 2015. Talented and proficient operators are critical to successful plant operations and protecting the health of Washington’s waters,” said Heather Bartlett, who manages Ecology’s Water Quality Program.

Ecology evaluated all of the plants in Washington for compliance with; meeting pollution limits, monitoring and reporting requirements, spill prevention planning, pretreatment, and overall operational demands of their water quality permit.

In Grays Harbor, this is the 9th straight honor for the City of Aberdeen, 6th straight for Pacific Beach, and 3th straight for Elma. All local winners have been honored within the past 5 years.

Grays Harbor County

City of Aberdeen Wastewater Treatment Plant
City of Elma Wastewater Treatment Plant
Pacific Beach Wastewater Treatment Plant
City of Montesano Wastewater Treatment Plant
City of Ocean Shores Wastewater Treatment Plant
City of Westport Wastewater Treatment Plant

Pacific County

City of Long Beach Wastewater Treatment Plant
Washington State Parks and Recreation/Fort Columbia State Park Wastewater Treatment Plant
Willapa Regional Wastewater Treatment Plant


When the awards program began in 1995, only 14 treatment plants had perfect compliance, compared to the 119 honored this year.

Ecology recently offered $96 million in grants and loans to 26 wastewater treatment facility projects. In addition, Ecology provides technical assistance to many small plants to help them operate successfully.

Along with funding and awards, Ecology oversees the certification program for wastewater operators – the people who actually run wastewater treatment plants.

“Washington’s growing population creates a greater need for wastewater treatment every day and we encourage people to go into this field because there are jobs to be had,” Bartlett added.

Find out more about the state’s wastewater operator certification program at Ecology’s website.


2015 Recipients – by County

Outstanding Wastewater Treatment Plant Awards History List


Photo from our partners at GraysHarborTalk.com



Aberdeen man arrested after firearms, suppressor, and explosive device found WDFW to host meeting in Montesano for 2019 halibut season Construction near Montesano will close on-ramp Semi vs Semi accident sends one man to hospital Harbor Strong is looking to reduce underage drug use Over $650,000 coming to Quinault Indian Nation from DOJ