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Record of Decision System (RODS)

PALMERTON ZINC PILE

Abstract

Site Name:  PALMERTON ZINC PILE
Address:  211 FRANKLIN ST 
City & State:  PALMERTON  PA  18071
County:  CARBON
 
EPA ID:  PAD002395887
EPA Region:  03
 
NPL Status:  Currently on the Final NPL
 
ROD Type:  Record of Decision
ROD ID:  EPA/541/R-02/007
ROD Date:  10/09/2001
Operable Unit(s):  03
 
Abstract:  The Palmerton Zinc Superfund Site, Operable Unit #3, Community Soils consists of the borough of Palmerton, the Village of Aquashicola, and other residential areas of Lower Towamensing Township exhibiting elevated levels of hazardous substances from the zinc processing activities in Palmerton. The site is located in Carbon County, Pennsylvania in the vicinity of the Lehigh Gap and is approximately 15 miles north of Allentown, Pennsylvania. The Palmerton Zinc Pile Site was included on the NPL in 1983 because of the threat to human health and the environment posed by a Cinder Bank waste pile which is approximately 2.5 miles long and covers approximately 200 acres. Further investigation has indicated that elevated levels of heavy metals are prevalent throughout the Palmerton Area. The site is located primarily in a narrow valley bounded by two ridges: Blue Mountain to the south and Stoney Ridge to the north. The two zinc smelting facilities at the Site were known as the East Plant and West Plant. These facilities historically smelted zinc although other metal processing activities are conducted at East Plant. The Borough of Palmerton is located between the two facilities and the rural residential communities of Lower Towamensing Township (e.g. the Village of Aquashicola) lie primarily east of the former zinc smelting facilities.
 
Remedy:  The selected remedy, modified alternative 7, incorporates residential exterior soil, interior lead-based paint, and specialized cleaning remedial actions for all homes that qualify for such remediation and in which the homeowners consent to participate. Because lead-based paint abatement falls outside the scope of Superfund authority, the interior remedial action, as described in modified Alternative 7, will be undertaken by the PRPs if a consensual agreement between EPA and the PRPs for remedial design and remedial action can be reached. The modifications for PRP Alternative 7 include the elimination of reliance on existing vegetative cover for protectiveness and provides for and exterior soil cleanup standard of 950 ppm. This remedy is contingent upon any present, addressed appropriately unless the lead-based paint is determined not to pose a risk as determined by a licensed lead-based pain risk assessor.
 
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