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Drought could dehydrate paper industry

April 28, 2009
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MOSINEE, WI — If the six-year drought trend that has been seen in Central Wisconsin continues, it could spell trouble for the local paper industry, according to the Wausau Daily Herald.
According to the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources, when the Wisconsin River gets low and the water gets warm, there''s not enough river water to dilute the pollution in mill and sewage treatment plant discharge.
If rains don''t come and replenish the river, which is 26 inches lower than springtime averages, the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources will likely have to place restrictions on the discharge from mills, forcing them to scale back production, the story stated.
The mills and wastewater plants have to meet Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources-mandated levels of biochemical oxygen demand (BOD), which determines how fast biological organisms use up oxygen in a body of water, the story noted.
Wausau Paper''s local mill has a reservoir system it can fill up if water levels in the river are low and BOD levels high, the story added.
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