EPA Releases Cleanup Plan For Former General Electric Plant Site in New York

The proposal would implement natural attenuation in a contaminated state superfund site that originates in Auburn, New York.

After several years of consideration, the Environmental Protection Agency has released its proposed plan to clean up a portion of a contaminated former General Electric plant in New York state. The agency plans to hold a public meeting at a local high school on Aug. 8 to solicit feedback from the community.

The contaminated state superfund site, referred to as the Cayuga County Groundwater Contamination site, originates in the city of Auburn and stretches to the village of Union Springs, affecting the towns of Fleming, Springport and Aurelius, according to The Auburn Citizen.

In its proposal, the EPA suggests implementing a process of “natural attenuation,” or a naturally occurring reduction of levels of volatile organic compounds, in the site’s Area 3. The site was originally divided into three areas based on the severity of contamination, with Area 1 being the most heavily contaminated and Area 3 being the least, the Citizen reported.

“This proposed plan is one component of EPA’s long-term efforts to provide a cleanup for the Union Springs community,” Pete Lopez, an EPA regional administrator, said in a statement. “This plan reflects EPA’s commitment to prioritize the Superfund program and ensure that these sites are cleaned up as quickly and safely as possible.”

The first and second areas’ solutions include natural attenuation and bioremediation to promote the breakdown of volatile organic compounds, which can be dangerous to people’s health and the environment. The cleanup process for Area 1 began in 2016 and was estimated to cost General Electric nearly $23.5 million, the Citizen reported.

The plan for Area 3 was created based on data and trends observed by the EPA since it began sampling the site in 2002. After receiving public comments in 2012 and conducting a supplemental investigation, the EPA’s final cleanup proposal matched its initial recommended action of natural attenuation, the agency said.

Outside of the public meeting at Union Springs High School, additional public comments will be accepted until Aug. 27 and can be directed to rodrigues.isabel@epa.gov.

Download Center

  • Monitoring and Reporting on Air Emissions for Regulators and the Real World

    When it comes to managing compliance and regulatory issues surrounding air emissions, there are no easy jobs. With interviews from practitioners from American Electric Power, Red Cedar Gathering, Trinity Consultants, and Cority, this eBook provides practical advice to advance your air emissions monitoring and reporting programs.

  • What Every EHS Professional Should Know About ESG

    Join experts from Arcadis and Cority on April 27th to learn the most common ESG reporting frameworks and how technology can help you improve reporting efficiency, identify areas for improvement, and create defensible audit trails.

  • Green Quadrant EHS Software 2021

    Read the new report by independent analyst firm, Verdantix, to get an unbiased comparison of the 22 most prominent EHS software vendors in the industry.

  • RFP Template for Waste Management Software

    Learn the essential questions to ask when evaluating waste management software solutions with this free, ready-to-use RFP template

  • 5 Keys to Best-in-Class Chemical Management

    Running a safe chemical program is challenging and complex: from knowing what's on-site to proper handling and disposal - all while navigating regulatory changes. Learn the best ways to mitigate chemical risk, get the most value out of your data, and gain buy-in for a chemical management solution.

Featured Webinar