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Release Date: 4/2/1996
Contact Information: Paula Bruin, U.S. EPA, (415) 744-1587

 (San Francisco)--The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (U.S. EPA) today announced it will propose amending the cleanup decision for contaminated soils at the Koppers Superfund site, Oroville, Calif.

     The public is invited to attend a community meeting and provide comments on the proposed plan.  The meeting will be held at 7 p.m., Tuesday, April 16th, 1996, at the Oakdale Heights School, 2255 Las Plumas Ave., Oroville, Calif.

     U.S. EPA's proposed plan calls for excavating and disposing of contaminated soils in a landfill that would be constructed on the Koppers property. The landfill would be similar to the existing one recently built on-site for dioxin-contaminated soil that was excavated from a portion of the site.

     The plan would base the soil cleanup levels on future industrial, rather than residential, use of the site.  This proposal was made after several discussions with local land use planning authorities, local officials and the community.  The cleanup will protect workers at the site, and deed restrictions will prevent future residential development of the Koppers property.
     U.S. EPA is proposing the amendment after reevaluating soil cleanup standards and technologies that were selected in 1989 when the original cleanup decisions for the Koppers site were made.  Further analysis and studies found that the chosen cleanup technologies were not successful in reducing contaminant levels to the residential cleanup standards or were not capable of treating the combination of organic contaminants and metals that were found in soils at the site.  

     The public may comment on the proposed cleanup plan by
submitting written comments, postmarked by May 2, 1996, to:

     Fred Schauffler
     Remedial Project Manager (H-7-2)
     Hazardous Waste Management Division
     U.S. EPA, Region 9
     75 Hawthorne St.
     San Francisco, CA 94105

     Copies of the proposed plan and related documents are
available for public review at the following locations:

     Butte County Public Library    
     1820 Mitchell Ave.            
     Oroville, CA 95966

     Meriam Library
     California State University at Chico
     Chico, CA 95929

     As part of U.S. EPA's overall cleanup plan, two groundwater treatments plants have been built and are treating contaminated groundwater and containing any further migration of contaminants from the Koppers property.  

     The Koppers site is located just south of Oroville near State Route 70.  Wood treating operations have been used at the site since 1948.  Chemical handling procedures, wood treatment and storage operations resulted in soil and groundwater contamination.  The groundwater, surface water and soils have been contaminated with pentachlorophenol (PCP), dioxins and furans, polynuclear aromatic hydrocarbons, chromium and arsenic.

      In 1984, the Koppers site was added to the National Priorities List (NPL).  The NPL is the list of uncontrolled hazardous waste sites nationwide which pose the greatest threat to human health and the environment.  Sites on the NPL qualify for federal long-term cleanup efforts.

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