CTS OF ASHEVILLE, INC.
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- Announcements and Key Topics
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- Site News Archive
Announcements and Key Topics
Treatment is underway to clean up contaminants in the groundwater and soil at the CTS of Asheville, Inc. Superfund Site (Site). Electrical Resistance Heating (ERH) is being used to treat a 1.2-acre area beneath the former CTS plant. The system will operate through the fall of 2018 and is designed to extract 95 percent of the trichloroethene (TCE) in the treatment area, removing an estimated 20,000 pounds of pollutants.
Perimeter air monitoring is being conducted during the operation of the ERH treatment system and the results are posted weekly to the website. Click ERH air perimeter monitoring reports to view.
Historical use of solvents in the manufacturing of electronic components contaminated the CTS Site with TCE. The area being treated also contains non-aqueous phase liquid (NAPL) from weathered fuel oil. ERH is a technology that heats the ground to extract and treat these types of hazardous substances. Electricity runs through electrodes, heating the soil and groundwater to vaporize contaminants. The vapors are removed through extraction wells and treated before being discharged to the ambient air, which will be monitored.
System startup and testing began on May 29, 2018, and reached full operating power early June. Underground temperature is being raised gradually to vaporize the TCE. Emissions from the stack are being monitored together with continuous, real-time air monitoring at four locations around the perimeter closest to neighboring residences. If TCE is detected above Western North Carolina’s regulatory limit of 59 micrograms per cubic meter (ug/m3), actions will be taken to meet the standards. There may be a visible steam-like discharge from the stack. This is water condensation caused by weather conditions, not a release of TCE vapor.
The ERH treatment at the CTS Site is required under a March 7, 2017 settlement between EPA and the U.S. Department of Justice with CTS Corporation, Mills Gap Road Associates and Northrop Grumman Systems Corporation for an interim cleanup. The settlement also requires In-Situ Chemical Oxidation (ISCO) to treat TCE in an approximately 1.9-acre area to the north of the area being treated by ERH. The companies will spend an estimated $9 million total on the interim cleanup. A final site-wide cleanup will be selected in the future to address any contamination remaining after the ERH and ISCO technologies have had a chance to work over several years.
EPA distributes community updates periodically that provide current information on site activities.
Public Participation Opportunities
EPA and NCDEQ have conducted a broad range of community involvement activities to meaningfully involve the community and to ensure that the Asheville community remains informed about site activities throughout the site cleanup and evaluation process. Outreach activities have included public notices and information meetings regarding site progress and activities. Outreach activities have also included work with the local government.
The Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry (ATSDR) has also engaged in outreach activities along with the EPA and North Carolina Department of Health (NCDPH) to inform the community on contaminants of concern. EPA staff distributes Community Updates via email. If you would like to be added to the email distribution list, please click on the link above.
In 2013, EPA awarded the POWER (Protecting Our Water and Environmental Resources) Action GroupExit a Technical Assistance Grant (TAG). The TAG helps communities participate in Superfund cleanup decision-making. It provides funding to community groups to contract their own technical advisor to interpret and explain technical reports, site conditions, and EPA’s proposed cleanup plans and decisions throughout the Superfund process. The EPA Remedial Project Manager (RPM) and Community Involvement Coordinator (CIC) work closely with the technical advisor to coordinate technical reviews of work plans and reports.
Site News Archive
November 17, 2017: Cleanup to Begin at the CTS Superfund Site in Asheville, N.C.