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EPA Completes PCB Cleanup at Green Hill Quarry in Meddybemps, Maine
Release Date: 10/17/2001
Contact Information: Andrew Spejewski, EPA Press Office, (617) 918-1014
BOSTON – The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency announced today that it has completed a $2.6 million cleanup of PCB-contaminated soil from the Green Hill Quarry site in Meddybemps, Maine. Over the last five months, EPA contractors removed nearly 15,000 tons of PCB-containing soil from the site.
"This is a great accomplishment and good news for area residents," said Robert W. Varney, regional administrator for EPA's New England office. "We worked closely with the Maine DEP throughout the project, which has removed a potential source of PCB contamination from the area."
"The state appreciates EPA's commitment to address environmental problems in Maine and in particular, Washington County," said Martha Kirkpatrick, commissioner of the Maine Department of Environmental Protection (DEP). "With the successful completion of the Green Hill Quarry project, EPA and the DEP have once again demonstrated that good things result when agencies work together."
The cleanup began the last week of May and work was completed on October 12, as contractors excavated and removed PCB-contaminated sand and gravel from the Green Hill Quarry site. Over 12,000 tons of PCB-contaminated soil were shipped to hazardous waste landfills in New York and Michigan. An additional 2,400 tons of soil with only trace amounts of PCBs, classified as non-hazardous, were shipped to a secure permitted landfill in Norridgewock, Maine.
The Maine DEP assisted with the cleanup by helping to oversee work, coordinating analysis of soil samples, and funding disposal of the non-hazardous soil. The town of Baileyville, which owns the property, also assisted with site clearing and preparation.
The Green Hill Quarry was contaminated by transformers stored on the site by the owner of Eastern Surplus and Smiths's Junkyard. The property was later purchased by the town of Baileyville for use as a quarry. In 1983, the town took sand and gravel from the quarry and used it to build a road bed in the Woodland section of Baileyville. After PCB contamination was discovered, the town removed the contaminated sand and gravel from the road bed and returned it to the quarry site, where the Maine DEP secured it and monitored it to prevent exposure.
Last year the town of Cooper discovered that a local contractor had transported PCB-contaminated sand from the Green Hill Quarry pile to property owned by the town of Cooper, where it was intended to be used by the town for winter road sanding. The town of Cooper and the Maine DEP requested EPA's help in cleaning up Cooper's sand pile and permanently removing the Green Hill Quarry pile to avoid future problems. Last fall, EPA removed 2,400 tons of sand from the Cooper pile. This summer's cleanup removed all PCB contamination from the quarry site.