Two New Jersey Superfund Sites Ready to Come Off List
(New York, N.Y.) Successful cleanups were completed at two New Jersey Superfund sites, and now they are ready to be removed from the National Priorities List (NPL), the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) recently announced. The Agency finished cleanup work and follow-up monitoring at both the Grand Street Mercury site located in Hoboken, in Hudson County and the Mannheim Avenue Dump site located in Galloway Township, Atlantic County and now it is proposing to take both sites off its federal NPL. The sites were placed on the NPL in September 1997 and September 1983, respectively. EPA is taking comments on its proposals to remove the sites from Superfund. Once they are taken off the list, the sites will remain eligible for cleanup in the very unlikely event that changes in the conditions of the properties warrant such action.
“The fact that we can take two more New Jersey sites off the NPL shows that Superfund is a program that is working in New Jersey,” said EPA Regional Administrator Alan J. Steinberg. “In both cases, these sites that were once sources of concern for the surrounding communities are no longer a problem and we think it’s time to take them off the list.”
The Grand Street Mercury site was comprised of two buildings and a parking area. The property had been used for manufacturing mercury vapor lamps. In the early to mid 1990’s, one of the buildings was converted into fifteen residential and studio spaces. In 1995, extensive mercury contamination was discovered in this building and on the property in general. The buildings as well as the soil and air were contaminated with mercury vapors and EPA had the occupants permanently re-located to protect their health. The EPA purchased the land during the cleanup process. After re-locating the residents, the buildings were demolished and the contaminated soil was excavated and removed. The cleanup process was completed in 2005 and EPA and the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection (NJDEP) determined that the site no longer poses a threat to the public or the environment.
In spring 2007, EPA sold the Grand Street Mercury site, and in doing so, recovered over $5 million spent in the cleanup process in addition to the approximately $7 million already recovered from General Electric, which had owned the mercury lamp factory.
The 2-acre Mannheim Avenue Dump site was a landfill where approximately 300 drums of degreasing sludge from Lenox China were disposed of in a pit during the 1960s and, possibly, into the early 1970s. Along with the degreasing sludge, leaded waste, plaster molds, and china and clay forms were mixed into the waste piles. EPA negotiated the removal of approximately 25,000 pounds of degreasing sludge which had contaminated the ground water with trichloroethylene (TCE). This water is an aquifer that provides drinking water to the local community. A groundwater treatment system was installed in 1994 to pump out, treat and remove the contamination from the ground water. EPA and the State of New Jersey oversaw the installation of groundwater monitoring wells which were used to test and monitor the quality of the groundwater. In 2004 EPA concluded that the water treatment system had effectively protected the people who drink water from the aquifer. Subsequent groundwater monitoring has confirmed that the water continues to meet drinking water standards for TCE.
The public comment period on EPA’s proposal to delete the Grand Street Mercury site will close on July 30, 2007.
For more information about the Grand Street Mercury site, please visit: http://www.epa.gov/region02/superfund/npl/0204030c.htm. To submit your comments, please email Farnaz Saghafi, the Remedial Project Manager of the Grand Street Mercury site, at email@example.com.
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