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Person in yellow protective gear taking sediment samples in mud.
Sediment sampling near an oil slick in 1993 in front of the Metal Bank site (NOAA).

Settlement Finalized for Restoration at Metal Bank Superfund Site in Pennsylvania

February 1, 2022

On November 4, 2021 a settlement was finalized to resolve the liability of a dozen public utility companies for injuries to natural resources stemming from hazardous waste pollution at the Metal Bank Superfund site on the Delaware River in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.

The settlement was originally proposed on March 17, 2021 and was finalized after a public commenting period. 

The finalized settlement of $950,000 includes $535,193 to fund projects that will help restore natural resources injured by pollution; the remainder will partially reimburse past assessment costs. The trustees will release a restoration plan for public comment in the future.

From 1962 to 1985, Metal Bank of America Inc. owned and operated a salvage yard adjacent to the Delaware River. The facility recycled scrap metal and electrical transformers from various utility companies. 

Oil containing polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs) and other contaminants was released into the environment during the salvage process, and also leaked from an underground storage tank. The Environmental Protection Agency designated Metal Bank a Superfund site in 1983. 

Co-trustees for this site include NOAA, the Department of the Interior, acting through the Fish and Wildlife Service, and the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, acting through the Department of Environmental Protection, the Department of Conservation and Natural Resources, and the Fish and Boat Commission.