Hazardous Waste

Articles:

Proposed site for hydrologic and habitat restoration on Long Branch Creek in Charleston, South Carolina

Marsh Restoration Proposed for Koppers Hazardous Waste Site in Charleston, South Carolina

November, 19, 2018 - Today the Department of Justice announced that a consent decree was lodged on November 9, 2018 in the hazardous waste case of Koppers Co., Inc. in Charleston, South Carolina.

An aerial view of a meandering marsh channel at McKinney Wildlife Refuge. Credit USFWS

NOAA and Co-trustees Seek Comment on Draft Restoration Plan for Two Connecticut Hazardous Waste Sites

Trustees for the Lordship Point Gun Club site, a former skeet shooting range, and Raymark Industries site, a former car parts manufacturer in Connecticut, released a Draft Restoration Plan and Environmental Assessment (PDF, 197 pg).

Two excavators hammer away at the Bloede Dam on a river shortly after its breach. Credit: Maryland Department of Natural Resources.

Removing Bloede Dam - A Victory 10 Years in the Making

On September 14th, 2018 following ten years of planning between NOAA and project partners, explosives were detonated on the Bloede Dam. Water and rubble shot into the air, and the dam was breached. The Bloede Dam removal is one of the largest and most complicated in NOAA’s history, and a major victory for fish and communities along the Patapsco River in Maryland.  

Brown mink standing on rock next to stream surrounded by plants.

Mink numbers low in PCB-laden Hudson River, study finds

This week the U.S Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS), NOAA’s co-trustee on the Hudson River hazardous waste site, issued a press release and fact sheet about a new study on mink.

Sarah Allen assesses injuries to natural resources from her post in Alaska.

Meet Toxicologist Sarah Allan from Alaska

This is an excerpt from a monthly series profiling scientists and technicians who provide exemplary contributions to the mission of NOAA’s Office of Response and Restoration (OR&R). This month's profile is on Assessment and Restoration Division toxicologist and Alaska Regional Resource Coordinator, Sarah Allan.

Measuring a young Chinook salmon, part of the ongoing natural resources damage assessment at the Portland Harbor site. (NOAA photo)

NOAA Seeks Public Comment on Addendum to Natural Resource Assessment Plan for Portland Harbor

NOAA and other Trustee Council members have been conducting a natural resources damage assessment since 2010 for the Portland Harbor Superfund site in Portland, Oregon, to evaluate natural resource injuries incurred over time in areas contaminated with hazardous substances (pesticides such as DDT, PCBs, and others), and oil.

Kelp forests like this one of of Catalina Island provide shelter and food for fish and invertebrate species.

NOAA Announces Partnership to Restore Habitats Damaged by Oil and Hazardous Waste

NOAA and the National Fish and Wildlife Foundation are joining forces to restore habitat damaged from oil spills and hazardous waste releases in California. An initial cooperative agreement between the two organizations includes a recommendation of $1.5 million for restoration with potential for additional funding to support similar projects in other regions over the five-year time period.

The settlements include projects that protect 324 acres of unique habitat and improve public recreational access to natural resources. (NOAA photo)

Wisconsin’s Sheboygan River Community Gains 324 Protected Acres and Improved Public Recreation Access after Settlements

On April 17, 2018, the United States District Court for the Eastern District of Wisconsin entered final consent decrees announcing three settlements, with three separate companies, in excess of $4.5 million for natural resource damages at the Sheboygan River and Harbor Superfund site.

Caption: (l - r) Rebecca Hoff, Jason Lehto, Laurel Jennings, Debra Salstrom, Tom Elliott, and Dr. David Pyke (NOAA Photo)

Understanding Habitat Recovery Time for Restoration Planning in Washington State

Five NOAA scientists recently led a group of more than 40 trustees in a multi-day restoration planning exercise related to the Hanford Nuclear Site. The event took place in Richland, Washington, and increased scientific convergence about habitat recovery time after restoration actions are completed in an affected area.

(l - r ) Megan Callahan Grant, Restoration Center, NMFS Office of Habitat Conservation (Portland), Bill Duggan, Robinwood Riverie Homeowners Association, Nicole LeBoeuf, NOAA National Ocean Service,  Gary Howard, Columbia Restoration Group, and Bobby Proutt, Falling Springs. NOAA photo.

Fish and Wildlife Gain Critical Habitat Near Portland Harbor

National Ocean Service Deputy Assistant Administrator Nicole LeBoeuf met February 7, 2018, with key partners of the Rinearson Creek Restoration project in Gladstone, Oregon. The 33-acre restoration area is being created to bring back riparian, off-channel, and upland habitats for Chinook salmon, lamprey, bald eagle, river otter, and mink, as well as several important amphibian species.

(l - r) RADM Tim Gallaudet, assistant secretary of commerce for oceans and atmosphere and acting under secretary of commerce for oceans and atmosphere; Kurt Nelson, fish and water resources scientist, the Tulalip Tribes; Rebecca Hoff, NOAA environmental scientist and regional resource coordinator; Jennifer Steger, NOAA Restoration Center, regional supervisor. NOAA photo.

Washington Project Showcased to New NOAA Leader: Restoration Benefits Fish, Wildlife, and Local Communities

RADM Tim Gallaudet, acting under secretary of commerce for oceans and atmosphere, toured the Qwuloolt Estuary restoration project in Marysville, Washington, on January 26, 2018, to see an example of NOAA’s Damage Assessment Remediation and Restoration Program (DARRP) success.

$4 million Settlement Reached to Help NOAA Restore Port Gardner and Snohomish River Habitat

The U.S. Department of Justice announced a $4 million settlement that will fund some of NOAA’s restoration of sites damaged by industrial pollution in Port Gardner Bay and the Snohomish River in Washington state.

High grass along the banks of a creek at the 68th Street superfund site.

$51.5 million Settlement Approved to Cleanup and Restore Baltimore’s 68th Street Superfund Site

On November 29, 2017, the Federal District Court of Maryland approved a consent decree (pdf) that moves forward the cleanup and restoration of the 68th Street Superfund Site near Baltimore, Maryland.

Amsterdam Dunes, a rare Great Lakes coastal dune and swale habitat, will be preserved as part of the proposed settlement.

Trustees Seek Comments on Project to Protect Unique Habitat in Wisconsin

On December 12, 2017, the U.S. Department of Justice issued a press release announcing three settlements, with three separate companies, in excess of $4.5 million for natural resource damages at the Sheboygan River & Harbor Superfund site. These settlements will resolve claims brought by NOAA and its co- trustees regarding liability for historic industrial discharges of chemicals that caused injury to public natural resources.

Case Pages:

Aerial view of site (cleared area) and surrounding wetlands

Dupont Beaumont

Hazardous Waste Site | Beaumont, TX | 1954 to 2007

 

Restored wetland at the Raleigh Street Dump site.

Raleigh Street Dump

Hazardous Waste Site | Tampa, FL | 1977 to present

 

What Happened?

From 1977 until 1991, local manufacturing companies disposed of battery casings, furnace slag, and construction debris at this illegal dumpsite in Tampa, Florida. Lead, arsenic, and other toxic substances from the improperly handled waste contaminated soils, groundwater, and wetlands at the site.

South Branch Creek and Piles Creek are tidal tributaries that discharge to the Arthur Kill, a tidal strait located between New Jersey and Staten Island.

Piles Creek

Hazardous Waste Site | Linden, New Jersey | Late 1800s to present

Manufacturing of dyes, surfactant, pesticides, and other industrial chemicals and products began on the Tremley Point peninsula in Linden, New Jersey as early as 1889. Chlorine gas production, using a process that involved mercury, began here in 1955 and continued through 1985. Wastes and wastewaters emptied directly and indirectly to Piles Creek, South Branch Creek, the Arthur Kill, and their associated tidal wetlands. Mercury, arsenic, other metals, SVOCs, and other toxic substances were released into the surrounding environment.

koppers site

Koppers Co, Inc.

The Koppers Site formerly housed wood treatment and fertilizer manufacturing facilities. These facilities released hazardous substances into wetland and river habitat in and near the Ashley River. The groundwater at the site was also contaminated, and impacted nearby wetland and river habitat.

 

Alewife are spawning in the lake again, most likely for the first time since the creek was impounded more than 175 years ago.

Liberty Industrial Finishing

Hazardous Waste Site | Massapequa Creek, Farmingdale NY | 1930’s to Present

 

Hempstead Harbor successfully restored its salt marsh a few years ago, and will use the funds to remove invasive plants as part of its long term management efforts.

Mattiace Petrochemical

Hazardous Waste Site | Glen Cove, NY | 1960s to Present

The Mattiace Petrochemical Co., Inc. site is located adjacent to Garvies Point Preserve along the north shore of Glen Cove Creek, a tributary to Hempstead Harbor on the north shore of Long Island. Beginning in the 1960s, chemical storage, blending, repackaging, and drum cleaning took place on site. Drum cleaning wastes were stored in a wet well and a leaching pool where they contaminated groundwater. Hazardous wastes reached the creek via runoff, underground piping, and groundwater discharge.

Hudson River shoreline looking south from a location just upriver. Contamination found within and below the river sediments shown in this photo.

Quanta Resources Corporation

Hazardous Waste Site | Edgewater, NJ | 1930 to present

The Quanta Resources Corporation site in Edgewater, NJ, is a former oil and tar storage and recycling facility on approximately 8 acres. The site is adjacent to the lower Hudson River, approximately 9.9 miles upstream of Upper New York Bay.

Piles of floating plastic trash litter the site. Proposed trashracks will capture and remove this material from the watershed.

68th Street

Hazardous Waste Site | Rosedale, Maryland | 1953 – 1970

 

A warning sign cautions people can be exposed to site-related contaminants at Tidal Ferry Creek.

Raymark Industries, Inc.

Hazardous Waste Site | Stratford, CT | 1919 to Present

Beginning in 1919, Raymark Industries, Inc. manufactured automotive parts at a 34-acre property along the Housatonic River estuary. Raymark initially disposed of manufacturing wastes on-site, but waste materials were also released to Ferry Creek via a culvert from on-site waste lagoons. Lagoon waste sludge was also used as fill on multiple residential, commercial, and municipal properties in Stratford, and in several wetland sites draining to the Housatonic River.

Oil pits dominated the Malone site prior to the cleanup.

Malone Service Company

Hazardous Waste Site | Texas City, Texas | 1964 – 1997

From 1964 to 1997, on the shores of Swan Lake and Galveston Bay, the Malone Services Company operated a reclamation, storage and disposal facility for waste oils, chemicals, and hazardous wastes. During its operation, hundreds of businesses sent more than 480 million gallons of organic and inorganic waste to the facility. Wastes were stored in two earthen, unlined pits which released contaminants to the groundwater within the site, and runoff into surface waters.

The Talbot Mills Dam in Billerica, Massachusetts, has been in this location since 1711.

Nyanza

Hazardous Waste Site | Ashland, MA | 1917 – 1978

What Happened?

Between 1917 and 1978, Nyanza, Inc. and other companies manufactured textile dyes and other products at this site. Their operations generated large volumes of industrial waste and they contaminated the soil, groundwater and wetlands of the Sudbury River. Mercury, chromium, arsenic, lead and organic compounds were released and reached as far downstream as the Concord River.

Fish community survey on Newtown Creek.

Newtown Creek

Hazardous Waste and Oil Spill Site | New York City, NY | Late 1800s to Present 

The Trustees are studying the impacts to recreational fishing which has been limited in Bayou d'Inde since 1987 and the Calcasieu since 1992.

Bayou d'Inde

Hazardous Waste Site | Calcasieu Parish, LA | 1920s to Present

What Happened

The banks of Bayou d’Inde have been industrialized since oil and natural gas deposits were discovered nearby in the 1920s. Chemical manufacturing and petroleum refining facilities have released toxins—including PCBspolychlorinated biphenyls; a class of chemicals previously used in manufacturing that remain in the environment for many decades, accumulate in living creatures, and pose health hazards to humans, wildlife, and fish., dioxinsA group of highly toxic chemicals that are the byproduct of some industrial processes and incineration of plastics; they accumulate in living creatures and are known to cause cancer in humans., lead, and mercury—into the bayou and surrounding areas for decades.

Acushnet Sawmill Dam prior to removal

New Bedford Harbor

Hazardous Waste Release |New Bedford Harbor, MA| 1940s – 1970s

New Bedford Harbor is a major commercial fishing port and industrial center in southeastern Massachusetts on Buzzards Bay. From the 1940s to the 1970s, manufacturers discharged wastes containing  PCBs and toxic metals into New Bedford Harbor. This resulted in high levels of contamination throughout the waters, sediments, plants, and wildlife of the Harbor and parts of Buzzards Bay.

The former coal tar processing facility pier. Photo by Alan Fowler of BBL inc.

Island End River

Hazardous Waste Site | Everett, MA | 1890s to Present

“Tar seep” in an upland area at the head of Slip 6. The tar-like substances shown here are similar to the contaminants that were removed during the remediation process at several sites within the St. Louis River Estuary.

St. Louis River/Interlake/Duluth Tar

Hazardous Waste Site | Duluth, Minnesota | 1890s – Present

What Happened?

As result of historical industrial operations along the St. Louis River numerous hazardous chemicals were released into the environment. The St. Louis River Superfund site was listed on the National Priorities List in 1983.

Electronic parts and components, including capacitors, were manufactured and transformer oils were tested at the Cornell-Dubilier Electronics Inc. facility from 1936 through 1962.

Cornell-Dubilier Electronics

Hazardous Waste Site | South Plainfield, NJ | 1930s to Present

Cornell-Dubilier Electronics, Inc. manufactured electronic components on this 26-acre property from 1936 to 1962. PCBs, metals, and other hazardous substances were released into the surrounding environment, including a stream on the property which flows into Bound Brook, a tributary of the Lower Raritan River.

After contamination was removed from the site, stream restoration, shown here, was completed.

Spectron

Hazardous Waste Site | Elkton, MD | 1961 to Present 

Beginning in 1961, a solvent recycling facility here contaminated soils and groundwater with VOCs. These substances were released into the adjacent Little Elk Creek, which flows into the Elk River, a tributary to the Chesapeake Bay.

Lordship beach after remediation.

Lordship Point

Hazardous Waste Site | Stratford, CT | 1920s to Present

What Happened?

The Remington Gun Club operated a skeet shooting range at Lordship Point beginning in the 1920s. The peninsula is located at the mouth of the Housatonic River estuary, where it empties into Long Island Sound. An estimated 4.8 million pounds of lead gun shot from the firing range contaminated on-site uplands, salt marshes, and shallow water habitats adjacent to the site.

A fishway, or fish ladder, was constructed as part of the restoration effort to help herring travel upstream.

Rose Hill Landfill

Hazardous Waste Site | South Kingstown, RI | 1960s to Present

This abandoned quarry adjacent to the Saugatucket River was used for the disposal of household and industrial wastes from 1967 until 1983. The site included 27 acres of solid waste, 15 acres of sewage sludge, and an 11-acre bulky waste disposal area. Elevated levels of toxic metals leached from the landfill via groundwater to Mitchell Brook, the Saugatucket River, and Saugatucket Pond.

Wild rice is one of several species reintroduced to East Foundry Cove marsh as part of on-going efforts to reconstruct the wetland following remediation in 1995.

Marathon Battery

Hazardous Waste Site | Cold Spring, NY | 1952 to Present

The American Cyanamid site sits on the banks of the Raritan River.

American Cyanamid

Hazardous Waste Site | Bridgewater, NJ | 1915 - Present

For decades, the American Cyanamid facility released a range of contaminants directly into the Raritan River. The factory manufactured chemicals and pharmaceuticals, and distilled coal tar. 

Union Slough is a branch of the Snohomish River which feeds into Port Gardner Bay. These sloughs are critical to the survival of many species of salmonids.

Port Gardner

Hazardous Waste Site | Everett, Washington | Early 1900s to Present

General Electric plant on the Hudson River.

Hudson River

Hazardous Waste Site | Hudson Falls, NY | 1947 to Present

Beginning in 1947 and continuing for approximately 30 years, General Electric (GE) Company released more than a million pounds of PCBs into the upper Hudson River. These chemicals were a byproduct of GE’s industrial operations at Fort Edward and Hudson Falls, New York. Since then, ongoing discharges of PCBs have continued from sediments and underground sources.

A view North of the marsh and upland of the Kerr-McGee Chemical Corp. site.

Kerr-McGee Chemical Corp. (Tronox)

Hazardous Waste Site | North Carolina | 1936 to Present

The Kerr-McGee Site is a former creosote wood-treating facility located near the Cape Fear River, Brunswick River and Sturgeon Creek in Navassa, NC. The facility was dismantled by 1980, but creosote and sludge were left on site, which led to the release of contaminants into the surrounding evironment.

Phosphogypsum stack breach released acidic, nutrient-rich water into surrounding wetlands and waterways.

Mosaic

Hazardous Waste Release | Riverview, FL | September 2004

 

What Happened?

On September 5, 2004, acidic process water was released from the Mosaic Fertilizer, LLC storage containment system during Hurricane Frances. By the following day, an estimated 65 million gallons had emptied into Archie Creek Canal, Hillsborough Bay, and surrounding wetlands.

 

Bridge over the Grasse River

St. Lawrence River

Hazardous Waste Site | Massena, New York | 1903 to Present

Kalamazoo River

Hazardous Waste Site | Allegan & Kalamazoo Counties, MI | 1950s to Present

Paper mills conducting carbonless copy paper recycling released PCBs polychlorinated biphenyls; a class of chemicals previously used in manufacturing that remain in the environment for many decades, accumulate in living creatures, and pose health hazards to humans, wildlife, and fish. into the Kalamazoo River from the late 1950s through the early 1970s.

Sand cap being placed on floodplain in 2008.

Ciba-Geigy

Hazardous Waste Site | McIntosh, Alabama | 1950s to Present

Beginning in the 1950s, the Ciba-Geigy facility manufactured the pesticide DDT and other chemicals. Manufacturing waste and other hazardous substances were released into unlined pits on the property, and discharged into the adjacent Tombigbee River and its floodplain until 1963.

Oyster reef restoration site along the shoreline of Hillsborough Bay.

Mulberry

Hazardous Waste Release | Polk County, FL | December 1997

 

What Happened?

On December 7, 1997, a breach occurred in a containment stack at the Mulberry Phosphates Inc. (MPI) facility in Mulberry, Florida. Approximately 50 million gallons of acidic process water was released into Skinned Sapling Creek, flowing into the Alafia River. The contaminated water ultimately traveled approximately 36 miles of the Alafia River before emptying into Tampa Bay.

 

Aerial view of LCP Chemical site and upland marsh along the Turtle River.

LCP Chemical

Hazardous Waste Site | Brunswick, GA | 1919 to Present

From the 1919 to 1994, the LCP Chemical site was occupied by a series of industrial operations. An oil refinery, power plant, and chlor-alkali facility released multiple hazardous substances into the surrounding area. Contamination has been found in Purvis Creek, Turtle River, Brunswick River, and surrounding salt marsh, all part of the Turtle-Brunswick River Estuary (TBRE).

Cutting through south Seattle, the Duwamish is an industrial river.

Lower Duwamish River

Hazardous Waste Site | Washington State | Mid-20th Century

What Happened?

The Duwamish River was once a wide, meandering river with large areas of mudflats and marshes. By the 1940s, channelization and filling had transformed the 9-mile estuary into a 5-mile industrial waterway. This process destroyed 97 percent of the original habitat.

Housatonic River.

Housatonic River

Between 1932 and 1977, the General Electric Company (GE) released PCBs polychlorinated biphenyls; a class of chemicals previously used in manufacturing that remain in the environment for many decades, accumulate in living creatures, and pose health hazards to humans, wildlife, and fish. and other chemical wastes into the Housatonic River.

Looking downstream at the Metal Bank site and mudflats on the Delaware River in 1991.

Metal Bank

Hazardous Waste Site | Philadelphia, PA | 1962 to Present

 

Berry's Creek Canal looking east towards Manhattan Island.

Berry’s Creek Watershed

Hazardous Waste Site | Wood-Ridge, East Rutherford, and Carlstadt, NJ | 1929 to Present

Starting in 1929, several industrial facilities released mercury, PCBs, PAHs, VOCs, and other hazardous substances into Berry’s Creek and the surrounding area.

 Contamination is found in sediment from the Dundee Dam to the mouth of the river, throughout Newark Bay, and other portions of the New York/New Jersey Harbor.

Lower Passaic River and Greater Newark Bay

Hazardous Waste Site | New Jersey | 1940s to present

In the 1950s and 1960s, Agent Orange was manufactured at a facility on the banks of the Lower Passaic River (LPR). One of the byproducts of its production, the toxin TCDD was released into the estuary.

Canoeing the Sheboygan River in the fall. (Deb Beyer, University of Wisconsin)

Sheboygan River and Harbor site

Hazardous Waste Site  |  Sheboygan, WI | 1870s to Present

Beginning as early as the 1870s, various industrial facilities released PCBs, heavy metals, and PAHs to the Sheboygan River and the surrounding area. EPA designated the lower 14 miles of the Sheboygan River a Superfund site in 1986.

The Karileen restoration project is designed to provide enhancements to fish and wildlife habitat on the west branch of Hylebos Creek.

Commencement Bay

Hazardous Waste Site | Tacoma, WA | 1920s to Present

In the early 1900s, industrialization in Commencement Bay led to the filling of a vast area of tideflats, as well of channelization of the meandering streams and rivers that flowed into the bay. Beginning in the 1920s, the resulting eight channelized waterways received releases of hazardous substances from various industries, including shipbuilding, oil refining, and chemical manufacturing plants. 

Southern Castro Cove and Chevron Richmond Refinery. Wildcat Creek entering Castro Cove in the background.

Castro Cove

Hazardous Waste Site | Richmond, California | 1902 to 1987

 

Juvenile Chinook salmon.

Portland Harbor

Since the early 1900s, numerous facilities have released oil, PCBs polychlorinated biphenyls; a class of chemicals previously used in manufacturing that remain in the environment for many decades, accumulate in living creatures, and pose health hazards to humans, wildlife, and fish., heavy metals, pesticides, and other hazardous substances into Portland Harbor.

Aerial view of Eagle Harbor.

Eagle Harbor

Hazardous Waste Site | Bainbridge Island, WA | Early 1900s to Present

Hazardous substances were released from the Wyckoff Company wood treatment facility and a shipyard beginning early in the 20th century. Released contaminants included PAHs, mercury, and heavy metals.

A view of the free-flowing section of Columbia River.

Hanford Nuclear Site

Hazardous Waste Site | Tri-Cities, WA | 1940s to Present

The Hanford Nuclear Site is located in eastern Washington State, and encompasses more than 500 square miles of land. For nearly 30 years, The U.S. Department of Defense and the Department of Energy produced tons of plutonium for use in the atomic weapon program.