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EPA Places Three Sites on the Final Superfund National Priorities List in New Jersey
Release Date: 09/04/2002
|(#02087) NEW YORK, N.Y. -- The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) today placed three more sites in New Jersey on its Superfund National Priorities List (NPL) of hazardous waste sites. The sites include the Atlantic Resources Corporation in the northern part of Sayreville, the Quanta Resources, Inc. site along the Hudson River in Edgewater and the Diamond Head Oil Refinery site in Kearny.
“EPA has already started work in Sayreville and Edgewater and the designation of these sites to the NPL will speed up the correction of these hazardous waste problems,” said EPA Regional Administrator Jane M. Kenny. “When a hazardous waste site is added to the NPL, it marks the beginning of a partnership between EPA and the affected neighborhood. Successful interaction is the best way to develop a site cleanup plan that is acceptable to the community. It sets the stage for site redevelopment that coincides with local interests and planning,” she added.
The following are descriptions of the three sites in New Jersey designated today for the final NPL:
ATLANTIC RESOURCES CORPORATION SITE
The Atlantic Resources Corporation (ARC) site is located in the northern outskirts of the borough of Sayreville, and was used for the recycling and reclamation of metals and industrial solvents. Activities at the site in the 1970s and early 1980s may have included hazardous waste incineration.
In September 1995, EPA placed the Horseshoe Road Superfund site on the NPL, which included the 10-acre ARC facility along with a neighboring former industrial facility and two dump areas. As a result of legal actions taken by a group of potentially responsible parties, this property was formally removed from the Horseshoe Road site in April 1997. However, EPA was not precluded from taking future action at the ARC site if further evaluation revealed significant contamination. Because of its proximity and the potential interrelated contamination problems, the ARC site was investigated in conjunction with the Horseshoe Road site between October 1997 and August 1998. EPA found that soil, surface water and ground water contamination remains at the ARC site at concentrations sufficient to trigger a federal Superfund cleanup. The investigation also showed that releases from the ARC property are contaminating the surrounding marshes and the Raritan River, which is a fishery.
QUANTA RESOURCES, INC. SITE
The site on River Road in Edgewater is a former waste oil terminal and prior to that, a coal tar facility with numerous above and below-ground tanks used to store waste oil, tar, asphalt, sludge and unknown liquids. The state of New Jersey shut the facility down in 1981 when its storage tanks were found to contain large quantities of waste oils contaminated with polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs).
From 1984 to 1988, EPA supervised a series of major Superfund actions to clean and decontaminate storage tanks on the site and remove some underground piping and soil that contained coal tar. EPA sampling in 1992 showed hazardous substances were still present at the site. Between 1998 and 2000, under an agreement with EPA, Allied Signal, a former owner of the property, hired a contractor to investigate the extent and nature of the contamination. The findings, which showed the contamination extended beyond the property, prompted EPA to propose adding Quanta Resources to the NPL.
Allied Signal’s investigation found the contamination from Quanta Resources extends from an area west of the site to 750 feet east of the site into the sediment of the Hudson River. Contamination at the site was also found to extend under neighboring properties located to the north and south of the original facility.
DIAMOND HEAD OIL REFINERY DIVISION SITE
The site is an inactive facility on a 15-acre property along Harrison Avenue in Kearny that was once used as an oil refinery. It consists of wetlands, drainage ditches, a pond and the remains of the oil refinery operation. The site was in operation from 1946 to early 1979. Until 1982, the abandoned site was not completely fenced and during this time, waste oils and other debris were dumped there. In January 1985, the property was sold to Mimi Urban Development Corporation, which changed its name to Hudson Meadows Urban Development Corporation, the current site owners.
During facility operations, two above ground storage tanks and possibly underground pits were used to store oily wastes. These wastes were intermittently discharged directly to adjacent properties, including the wetland area to the south of the site, creating an oil lake. The New Jersey Department of Transportation (NJDOT) acquired the property south of the site in 1968 and nine years later began construction of I-280. NJDOT removed nine million gallons of oil-contaminated water and five to six million cubic yards of oily sludge from the lake. Also during that year, privately financed cleanups at the site removed approximately 7,500 gallons of chemically-contaminated material from two above ground tanks and 27 tons of contaminated soil.
In an expanded site inspection conducted in 1999, EPA gathered evidence of volatile organic chemicals, pesticides, PCBs and heavy metals in soil, surface water and sediments on the property. EPA’s 1999 inspection of the site found the remaining chemical and heavy metal contamination at the site serious enough to warrant proposing the site to the NPL in September of last year.
The Agency periodically proposes sites to the NPL and designates proposed sites as final. Sites that are designated as final are eligible for funds to plan and conduct long-term cleanups. Proposed sites are investigated further to determine the extent of the risks they may pose to human health and the environment.
The total number of federal Superfund sites in New Jersey is now 115.
The NPL rule will be published in the Federal Register tomorrow. For members of the public interested in obtaining copies of the notice, an updated NPL list or site descriptions, please contact the RCRA/Superfund Hotline at 1-800-424-9346 or 703-412-9810.