C & D RECYCLING
FOSTER TOWNSHIP, PA
On this page:
- What Has Been Done to Clean Up the Site?
- What Is the Current Site Status?
- Activity and Use Limitations
- Sampling and Monitoring
- Emergency Response and Removal
On related pages:
The 45-acre C & D Recycling site is located in Foster Township, Pennsylvania. The site owner operated a metal-reclamation plant on site from the 1960s to the early 1980s. The company incinerated lead and plastic-cased telephone cables, or burned them in pits, in order to melt off the lead and reclaim the remaining copper wire. Processing activities also included mechanically stripping the plastic cable coverings and storing them in piles. These activities contaminated soil and sediment with hazardous chemicals. In 1987, the Site was addded to the National Priorites List.
What Has Been Done to Clean Up the Site?
The Site is being addressed through federal, state and potentially responsible party (PRP) actions. The site’s long-term remedy included removal, stabilization and off-site disposal of contaminated soil, ash and sediments. From June 1998 through August 1999, the PRPs stabilized and disposed 90,000 tons of contaminated media to an off-site disposal facility. Following excavation and disposal, the site was re-graded and seeded.
Air monitoring was conducted throughout the cleanup to ensure that air quality remained safe. EPA also conducted groundwater sampling, with tests from September 1999 and April 2000 demonstrating that the groundwater met safe drinking water standards. Post construction samples of the sediments in Mill Hopper Pond Pond and Mill Hopper Creek were collected by the PRPs in August 1999, August 2000, September 2002, October 2003, and December 2004. Based upon these sampling events, a small area of residual contamination in the creek and pond required additional cleanup. This work was completed in April, 2005.
In September 1987, AT&T signed an EPA legal consent order, agreeing to construct a fence, seed contaminated areas, remove 1,000 tons of cable casings from the site, and take measures to control soil erosion. Also in September 1987, EPA issued an additional consent order to AT&T, requiring AT&T to identify the types of contamination and its location, and also identify cleanup options. The investigations were completed in early 1992. EPA reviewed the findings and selected a cleanup approach. EPA's decision is outlined in the Record of Decision (ROD) dated September 1992. As discussed above, the selected cleanup involved removing and stabilizing contaminated soil, ash, and sediments. In August 1994, EPA issued a unilateral order, requiring AT&T to design and carry out EPA's selected cleanup approach. The design phase was completed in May 1998. Between 1996 and 1997, AT&T removed the remaining debris from the site. During the same time, AT&T also demolished and disposed of the old furnace. Soil and sediment cleanup started in June 1998 and were officially completed with EPA’s issuance of the Final Close Out Report in October 2016.
What Is the Current Site Status?
Following the completion of cleanup actions, operation and maintenance activities were conducted until 2007. EPA considered deleting the Site from the National Priorities List (NPL) around 2009. However, in January 2010, the deletion process had been delayed pending EPA’s issuance of new clean-up criteria for dioxin at Superfund sites. The new criteria would include revised cleanup goals for dioxin found in soil, along with guidance for re-evaluating dioxin-contaminated sites where remedial action is already complete. EPA’s new dioxin criteria were finalized in February 2012. Since the new dioxin cleanup goals were lower than the previous dioxin cleanup goals used at the site, EPA and the potentially responsible parties (PRPs) performed additional dioxin sampling in September 2015, and determined that no residual dioxins are present at the site at or above the new cleanup goals. With questions about dioxin resolved, EPA issued a Final Close Out Report in October 2016, demonstrating that construction of the selected remedy at the site has been completed in accordance with the ROD, and that all remedial action objectives, performance standards, and cleanup goals established in the ROD have been achieved. EPA removed the C&D Recycling Site from the NPL on February 26, 2018.
Activity and Use Limitations
At this site, activity and use limitations that EPA calls institutional controls are in place. Institutional controls play an important role in site remedies because they reduce exposure to contamination by limiting land or resource use. They also guide human behavior. For instance, zoning restrictions prevent land uses – such as residential uses – that are not consistent with the level of cleanup.
For more background, see Institutional Controls.
The Site was cleaned up to standards that allow for ‘unrestricted use and unlimited exposure’ which means that there are no restrictions on reuse as a result of the Superfund cleanup. However, land use restrictions were voluntarily placed on the original 46-acre C&D Recycling property by the previous and current property owners, to prohibit residential or commercial redevelopment. This property was converted to a wildlife preserve in approximately 2006. The remaining properties that comprise the Site are undeveloped at the present time, but could be developed subject to local zoning ordinances. EPA is not aware of any future development plans for these properties.
Sampling and Monitoring
Monitoring was conducted during and after cleanup construction activities to ensure that:
- all soils and sediments exceeding Site performance standards were removed from the Site;
- all solid Site media was stabilized to meet the Site performance standards;
- all solid Site media (including both stabilized and unstabilized media) complied with all applicable disposal approval requirements and were properly characterized for disposal purposes;
- all construction wastewaters were properly characterized and managed;
- all fill materials did not exceed any of the Site performance standards;
- all structurally competent Site buildings did not exceed the performance standards established for the Site;
- potential exposures of on-Site personnel to airborne releases of dust that may have contained Site-related contaminants were minimized;
- construction activities did not result in the release of dust beyond the limits of the Site;
- on-Site groundwater was not impacted by construction activities associated with the Site remediation; and
- surface water quality downstream of the pond and impacted portions of the creek did not exceed the associated performance standards during implementation of the remedial action.
Emergency Response and Removal
This cleanup has also included removal actions, or short-term cleanups, to address immediate threats to human health and the environment. EPA actions conducted between 1985 and 1997 included recycling 68 tons of lead-contaminated materials excavated from the burn pit areas; fencing the site; soil erosion controls; and the removal of 1,000 tons of cable casings.