Superfund Information Systems: Site Profile

Superfund Site:

ROCKWOOL INDUSTRIES INC.
BELL COUNTY, TX

Cleanup Activities

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Background

Current Status
The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency Region 6 (EPA) will be conducting the second five-year review of remedy implementation and performance at the Rockwool Industries Inc. Superfund site (Site) in Belton, Texas. The Site covers about 100 acres and is divided by Farm to Market (FM) Road 93. Nearby land uses are primarily industrial but also include commercial, agricultural and residential areas. Some businesses currently operate on site; the remainder of the area is unused. Plans are in place for further development at the Site.

The second five-year review will determine if the remedy is still protective of human health and the environment. The five-year review is scheduled for completion in September 2017.

Site Background
From the mid-1950s until 1987, Rockwool Industries, Inc. manufactured mineral wool insulation on site. The Site’s remedy includes excavation and on-site consolidation of some wastes, capping of other wastes in place, revegetation, groundwater monitoring and institutional controls. Remedy construction finished in 2005; operation and maintenance activities are ongoing.

 

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What Has Been Done to Clean Up the Site?

The site is being addressed through federal, state and potentially responsible party (PRP) actions. Remediation of the contaminated media will reduce the health and ecological risk associated with the contaminants.

EPA has conducted a five-year review of the site’s remedy. These reviews ensure that the remedies put in place protect public health and the environment, and function as intended by site decision documents. The most recent review concluded that response actions at the site are in accordance with the remedy selected by EPA and that the remedy continues to be protective of human health and the environment in the short term. Continued protectiveness of the remedy requires continuing site operations, maintenance and monitoring as well as closing unused monitoring wells, installing additional warning signs, tree removal, addressing erosion concerns and needed repairs to remedial components in multiple areas across the site, and removing corrugated metal pipes across the site

 

Rockwool Industries, Inc. (Rockwool) manufactured mineral wool insulation from mid-1950s until February 1987. From 1984 to 1987, Rockwool operated under a Resource Conservation and Recovery Act (RCRA) permit. The facility made two types of mineral wool insulation: blow wool and batt wool. Blast furnaces manufactured the mineral wool using raw material such as slags from copper and antimony smelting, waste from limestone mining, as well as coke and basalt.

The raw material was melted in a coke-fired furnace and then extruded by blowing air over spinning drums to form fibers. The residue left in the furnace from the heating of the slags was a metal Ashot-type material. This Aspent iron shot was the main waste type generated as a part of the Rockwool production process.

Rockwool Industries, Inc. (Rockwool) manufactured mineral wool insulation from mid-1950s until February 1987. From 1984 to 1987, Rockwool operated under a Resource Conservation and Recovery Act (RCRA) permit. The facility made two types of mineral wool insulation: blow wool and batt wool. Blast furnaces manufactured the mineral wool using raw material such as slags from copper and antimony smelting, waste from limestone mining, as well as coke and basalt.

The raw material was melted in a coke-fired furnace and then extruded by blowing air over spinning drums to form fibers. The residue left in the furnace from the heating of the slags was a metal Ashot-type material. This Aspent iron shot was the main waste type generated as a part of the Rockwool production process.

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What Is the Current Site Status?

The site’s long-term remedy included the excavation and on-site consolidation of some wastes, capping in place for other wastes, planting of a vegetative ground cover, groundwater monitoring and implementation of institutional controls. Construction of the remedy finished in 2005. Operation and maintenance activities are ongoing.

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