EDISON TOWNSHIP, NJ
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The Kin-Buc Landfill Superfund Site is located in Edison Township, New Jersey. The 220-acre Site is composed of an inactive landfill that operated from the late 1940s to 1976. From 1971 to 1976, the Site was a State-approved landfill for industrial and municipal wastes, both solid and liquid. The Site accepted hazardous waste during this period, until the State revoked its permit in 1976 due to the violation of several environmental statutes. The Kin-Buc Site includes two major mounds, referred to as Kin-Buc I and Kin-Buc II, and one minor mound, referred to as Mound B. Site activities included the burying and compaction of contained wastes in Kin-Buc II, and the discharging of hazardous liquid wastes into bulldozed pits at the top of Kin-Buc I. Historically, aqueous and oily leachate seeped from the landfill into the adjoining wetlands, contaminating them with PCBs. The Site was listed on EPA’s National Priorities List in 1983, and is a potentially responsible party-lead site. To date, all remedial actions at the Site have been completed, and operations and maintenance is ongoing.
What Has Been Done to Clean Up the Site?
Landfilling began at the site about 1947, and Kin-Buc, Inc. started operating there in 1968. Between 1971 and 1976, Kin-Buc, Inc. operated the site as a State-approved landfill for industrial and municipal wastes, both solid and liquid. An estimated 70 million gallons of liquid wastes, including 3 million gallons of oily waste, and over 1 million tons of solid waste, were disposed of between 1973 and 1976. Three pits of black, oily leachate, designated Pits A, B, and C, were previously located at the edge of Kin-Buc I. Adjacent to the pits was an impoundment referred to as Pool C. Oil, heavily laden with polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs), accumulated in Pool C and then discharged into Edmonds Creek, a tributary of the Raritan River. In 1976, the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection (NJDEP) revoked Kin-Buc's permit to operate due to violation of both state and federal environmental statutes.EPA's involvement began in 1976, during the investigation of an oil spill at the Site, which revealed discharges of hazardous substances from the facility. Under a 1980 partial settlement, Kin-Buc, Inc. agreed to install a landfill cap and start a long-term monitoring program, but not to remediate the site or control the further migration of contaminants in the area. Therefore, in 1980, EPA began cleanup activities consisting of the collection, treatment, and disposal of oily and aqueous phase leachate from Pool C. In 1982, as part of the settlement negotiations, the owners and operators assumed responsibility for the cleanup actions. The Site was listed on the National Priorities List in 1983.
As part of the initial actions in 1984, 4,000 drums containing oily and aqueous phases of leachate and contaminated solids were shipped off site for incineration. From 1984 to 1994, about 5 million gallons of aqueous phase leachate were shipped off site for treatment and disposal.
Kin Buc I, Kin-Buc II, Pool C and Mound B: Cleanup of these areas proceeded in two phases. EPA selected the remedy for the landfill in the Site’s 1988 Record of Decision, or ROD. The selected remedy included installation of a 7,000-foot-long slurry wall around the two major landfill mounds (Kin-Buc I and Kin-Buc II). Additionally, a cap was placed on these mounds and an on-site treatment facility was constructed to treat contaminated groundwater and leachate captured from within the slurry wall. Cleanup started in August 1993, and was completed in January 1997. Cleanup activities at Mound B involved the placement and maintenance of a clay cap. A supplemental investigation in 1997 indicated that additional work was needed to remove buried drums from Mound B. Drum removal took place in May 2001, with cap enhancement and shoreline restoration took place between April and July 2002.
Adjacent Waterways and Wetlands: The potentially responsible parties, under EPA oversight, completed an investigation into the nature and extent of contamination in the wetlands, surface water, and groundwater found at and adjacent to the Site. This investigation identified volatile organic compounds (VOCs) in the groundwater, as well as elevated levels of polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs) and metals in sediments and local wildlife. The investigation concluded that contaminated wetland sediments were a source of contamination to local aquatic wildlife. EPA selected a remedy for these areas in the Site’s September 1992 ROD, which selected excavation of wetland sediments contaminated by PCBs in excess of 5 parts per million (ppm), the disposal of these sediments in the landfill, and the restoration of the excavated areas. Cleanup started in September 1994 and was completed by July 1995. A biota and sediment monitoring program was implemented in the remediated Edmonds Creek area, as part of the OU2 remedy. Results generally indicated improved conditions within Edmonds Creek as a result of the remedial action, with sporadic sediment concentrations greater than the remediation goal of 5 ppm for PCBs, and some evidence of biological uptake. In response to these findings, EPA conducted additional studies in and around Edmonds Creek to investigate other potential sources of PCBs within the water body.
What Is the Current Site Status?
The Site cleanup was addressed in three stages: initial emergency response actions to control runoff from the Site, two long-term remedial actions focused on the cleanup of the two major mounds and Pool C, and the cleanup of sediments in Edmonds Creek. Cleanup actions were completed at Kin-Buc I, Kin-Buc II, and Pool C by January of 1997, and cleanup actions in the wetlands area was completed in July of 1995.
The cleanup actions, cap enhancement, and shoreline restoration at Mound B was completed in July of 2002. Operation and Maintenance (O&M) activities are ongoing.
To date, approximately 25 million gallons of contaminated groundwater and leachate have been extracted from the landfill, treated, and discharged to the Raritan River. In addition, approximately 9,400 cubic yards of PCB-contaminated sediments were excavated from the wetlands adjacent to the Site.