Environmental Protection

EPA to Excavate Soil, Monitor Groundwater at Ellenville Scrap Iron Site

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency has finalized its plan to clean up the Ellenville Scrap Iron and Metal Superfund site in the Village of Ellenville, N.Y. in Ulster County.

The agency will excavate contaminated soil from six different areas at the site, consolidate the soil on the landfill portion of the site, and then securely cap the landfill, which will prevent further groundwater contamination. Any of the excavated soil or materials that are characterized as hazardous waste will be shipped off-site for proper disposal. EPA also will install a series of wells to monitor groundwater.

“After an extensive analysis of the contamination at the Ellenville Scrap Iron and Metal Superfund site, EPA has selected a plan that will result in a thorough and efficient cleanup,” said EPA Regional Administrator Judith Enck.

EPA added the Ellenville Scrap Iron Metal site to the Superfund National Priorities List on Oct. 7, 2002 after hazardous chemicals were found in the soil there. The 24-acre site, which was used for scrap metal operations from the 1950s until the 1990s, is divided into upper and lower portions by a landfill, approximately 40 feet high. Soil samples at the site showed levels of semi-volatile organic compounds and various metals.

From 1987 to 1998, the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation inspected the site numerous times, conducted sampling, and directed the owner to clean up onsite debris. The Village of Ellenville also removed a large number of tires from the site. During 2004 and 2005, EPA demolished all of the buildings at the site and disposed of waste oil tanks and approximately 20 drums containing hazardous materials. In addition, soil contaminated with lead was removed and disposed of off-site.

Beginning in 2007, EPA conducted an investigation at the site to determine the full nature and extent of contamination. The results lead to the decision for this cleanup action. Currently, the facility is secure, unoccupied, and unused.

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