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U.S. EPA proposes interim groundwater cleanup plan at Omega Chemical Superfund site in Whittier; Hosts 30 day public comment period

Release Date: 8/9/2005
Contact Information: Francisco Arcaute, (213) 244-1815; or Mark Merchant, (415) 947-4297

LOS ANGELES – The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency will hold a 30-day public comment period between Aug. 8 and Sept. 7, 2005 to present a proposed plan to contain groundwater contamination at the former Omega Chemical Corp. location in Whittier, Calif.

“This is a huge undertaking, one that will positively impact area residents for years to come,” said Keith Takata, director of the EPA’s Pacific Southwest Superfund office. “We invite the public to examine our proposal to conduct this important interim step in restoring groundwater quality.”

The EPA will hold a public meeting on:

Aug. 22, 2005, 7 - 9 p.m.
Presbyterian Intercommunity Hospital
12402 Washington Blvd.
Whittier, CA 90602-1006

The three alternatives that EPA evaluated for this interim cleanup action at the former Omega Chemical property are:

1) Contaminant removal and groundwater treatment from 14 wells on the Omega property area;

2) Putnam Street hydraulic containment of groundwater – this is the EPA’s preferred alternative, which calls for groundwater extraction and treatment from five wells along Putnam Street;

3) Additional contaminant removal and groundwater treatment from five wells along Putnam Street.

The former Omega property is located at 12504 and 12515 East Whittier Blvd. in Whittier. The 40,000 square foot area housed the Omega Chemical Corporation between 1976 and 1991, a solvent and refrigeration recycling facility that used volatile organic compounds such as degreasers.

The site was referred to the EPA in 1995 for listing on the National Priorities List; approximately 2,700 drums of hazardous chemicals and contaminated soil were removed from the location. In 1999, the Omega site was added to the EPA’s National Priorities List, which lists major hazardous sites across the nation.

To comment on the proposed plan, please contact:

Christopher Lichens, Remedial Project Manager, EPA
US EPA Region 9, SFD-7-4
75 Hawthorne Street
San Francisco, CA 94105
(415) 972-3149

For more information on the EPA’s Superfund program, please visit: