Ohio Superfund Settlement Hits $18.75M

     YOUNGSTOWN, Ohio (CN) — Rutgers Organics reached an $18.75 million settlement with federal authorities to complete the cleanup of the Nease Chemical Superfund Site near Salem, Ohio.
     The United States filed a complaint and consent decree related to the case Friday with the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Ohio.
     Nease Chemical produced pesticides such as Mirex at the site in question from 1961 to 1973. Now classified as a probable human carcinogen, Mirex is no longer produced in the United States.
     After Nease Chemical ceased operations in 1973, Rutgers acquired its assets.
     The Environmental Protection Agency has been working with Rutgers on cleaning up the site since 1988.
     Regulators say hazardous substances derived from Nease’s specialty products have been detected in the surrounding soil, ground water, sediments and wetlands. The fish in the nearby main surface water body, the Middle Fork Little Beaver Creek, have also been affected.
     Restoration of the area natural resources is expected to cost Rutgers $500,000, according to the settlement announcement. Rutgers has also agreed to reimburse federal and state agencies for the $1 million they put into the cleanup so far.
     The government says Nease’s contamination of the area has made the underlying groundwater aquifers unusable as a source of potable water.
     “As part of the settlement, Rutgers will remove a low-head dam, known as the Lisbon Dam on the Middle Fork Little Beaver Creek and restore adjacent streamside habitat,” according to a statement from the Justice Department. “Those projects, estimated to cost up to $150,000, are expected to help establish a free-flowing stream with a healthy and diverse fish population.”
     Rutgers will also complete cap soil, treat the ponds and ground water, replace contaminated sediment and floodplain soil.
     Conserving a variety of lands in the Little Beaver Creek watershed will require $366,000 from Rutgers in trust.
     Long-term operations and maintenance bring the estimated cleanup total to $18.75 million.
     Regulators published the settlement in the Federal Register, and it still must face a 30-day period of public comment and court approval.

%d bloggers like this: