News Releases from Region 04
EPA Proposes Site in Grenada, Miss., to National Priorities List to Clean Up Contamination
ATLANTA (January 9, 2018) – The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) proposed the Rockwell International Wheel & Trim site in Grenada, Miss., along with nine other sites across the country to the Superfund Program’s National Priorities List (NPL). An additional four hazardous waste sites were formally added to the NPL.
Superfund, as established by Congress in 1980, investigates and cleans up hazardous waste sites and converts them into community resources. EPA adds sites to the NPL when contamination threatens human health and the environment. Only sites added to the NPL are eligible to receive federal funding for long-term cleanup.
“Today’s action ensures the necessary resources are available for effective and safe revitalization of some of the most contaminated sites across the country,” said EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt. “Superfund clean-up continues to be a priority at EPA as we work intently to create a safer and healthier environment for all communities affected.”
EPA adds sites to the NPL when contamination threatens human health and the environment. EPA deletes sites from the NPL once all response actions are complete and all cleanup goals have been achieved. EPA typically initiates Superfund involvement because states, tribes or citizens ask for the Agency’s help. The Agency may also find contamination during its own investigations.
The Rockwell Grenada site includes the 40-acre facility at 635 Highway 332 (commonly called Grenada Stamping and currently operated by Ice Industries, Inc.), and other areas where site-related contaminants have migrated or were disposed. Rockwell International, followed by Textron Automotive and later by Grenada Manufacturing, operated a wheel cover manufacturing and chrome plating facility on the property from 1966 to the early 2000s. In 2005, portions of the plant were leased to Ice Industries, which converted the facility to a metal stamping plant that continues to operate today.
Past operations, spills and waste handling practices resulted in air, groundwater, surface water and soil contamination The solvent trichloroethene (TCE) has been found in the air inside the manufacturing building on-site, groundwater beneath the site, the adjacent Eastern Heights neighborhood, a former disposal area associated with the facility, nearby wetlands and Riverdale Creek.
EPA has been overseeing the cleanup of the facility under the Resource Conservation and Recovery Act (RCRA) program. The Agency’s priority is a comprehensive approach that addresses all contamination related to the former chrome plating operation at the facility and in the surrounding community.
On Dec. 29, 2017, a treatment system intended to reduce elevated levels of TCE inside the manufacturing building at the Grenada Stamping facility was restarted under an EPA removal action. Removal actions are short-term responses intended to protect people from risks or potential risks associated with contaminated sites. The treatment system will operate with EPA oversight and monitoring.
Adding the Site to the NPL will allow EPA to conduct a comprehensive assessment of all the risks to public health and the environment, and take the necessary cleanup actions. Only sites added to the NPL are eligible for receive federal funding for long-term cleanup.
Superfund addresses a variety of sites. While many Superfund sites were contaminated decades ago, at least six of the sites EPA is adding or proposing today were in operation within the last 15 years – and the main facility at the Rockwell Grenada site continues to operate today. These sites have contamination from a variety of sources, including manufacturing, electroplating and metal finishing.
The Superfund law directs EPA to update the NPL at least annually.
For Federal Register notices and supporting documents for the final and proposed sites: www.epa.gov/superfund/current-npl-updates-new-proposed-npl-sites-and-new-npl-sites
For information about Superfund and the NPL: www.epa.gov/superfund