Superfund (and Superfund Site)
WHAT IS CERCLA?
WHAT IS THE SUPERFUND?
- CERCLA stands for Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation, and Liability Act.
- This is a federal law that pertains to toxic and hazardous chemicals.
HOW IS CERCLA ENFORCED?
- A special fund provided through federal government to respond to heavily contaminated sites.
- It is used to pay for the clean up of any major pollution sites that need to be cleaned up immediately.
- The government funds the clean up while the responsible parties of the hazardous site are being identified.
- Funding will continue if the party cannot afford the cost of remediation.
WHAT IS REMEDIATION?
- CERCLA specifically names the United States Environmental Protection Agency as the federal agency responsible for enforcing the law and administering the Superfund.
- The EPA works closely with the Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry (ATSDR) to identify the hazardous materials and related health effects.
INFORMATION ABOUT THE SUPERFUND SITE
- This means to correct or clean up a polluted site.
- CERCLA requires that all Superfund sites must be made safe to prevent further contamination of the environment and to protect public health.
- After identifying contaminants and health hazards, a remediation plan is drafted, and subjected to approval by the EPA.
- The Occidental/Firestone Site is located southeast of the Borough of Pottstown, just over the border in Lower Pottsgrove Township.
- It is a 250-acre site bordered along three sides by the Schuylkill River. The Superfund site is situated on the river's 100-year floodplain.
- Occidental Chemical Corporation (OxyChem) is the current owner and has agreed to pay for a portion of the remediation costs.
- Occidental has drafted a remediation plan which is in the process of being implemented under the supervision of EPA.
- About 31,000 people live within a two-mile radius of the site.
- Specific waste disposal facilities located within the site include:
- A 7 acre solid waste landfill
- A 17 acre solid waste landfill
- 2 lined wastewater lagoons
- 4 unlined wastewater lagoons
- In 1990, the Federal Department of Health and Human Services declared that the volatile organic compounds and heavy metals at the site posed a potential public health concern because humans may be exposed to hazardous substances over time.
No indication presently exists that exposure to contaminants found at the site is occurring to the general public.
- The EPA estimates it will take 100 years to completely clean the contaminated groundwater beneath the site. It estimates the cost at $11.1 million costing OxyChem $403,000 per year through 2003 and $340,000 per year for the next 97 years. Superfund timeline
P.O. Box 3063
Stowe, PA 19464
| back to top
| donate online
| contact us
| contact web master