Superfund Information Systems: Site Profile

Superfund Site:

ORONOGO-DUENWEG MINING BELT
JOPLIN, MO

Cleanup Activities

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Background

The Oronogo-Duenweg Mining Belt Site covers about 20 square miles near Joplin, Missouri. Former mining and smelting operations contaminated soil and groundwater with lead, zinc and cadmium. Over 10 million tons of surface mining wastes contaminated about 7,000 acres of the site. Cleanup activities and monitoring are ongoing.

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What Is Being Done to Clean Up the Site?

The site is being addressed through federal and potentially responsible party (PRP) actions. EPA has conducted several Five-Year Reviews 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 completion of sub-aqueous disposal removal activities. EPA is funding health education through the Jasper County Health Department to educate citizens and parents on ways to prevent exposure to lead in addition to assisting the county in developing ordinances for construction to protect capped location and prevent the spread contamination.

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What Is the Current Site Status?

The long-term remedy included sub-aqueous disposal to clean up mine wastes (OU2 and OU3), removal and replacement of contaminated soils in residential yards. Groundwater contamination has resulted in the connection of 350 homes to public water supplies initiated in 2003. EPA began cleanup of mine wastes in 2008. Remedial action of contaminated residential yards ended in 2001. EPA connected affected homes to public water supplies in 2006.

OU 1 addresses mine waste and piles. Cleanup was initiated in 2007 where approximately 7 million cubic yards of mine waste has been completed to date. Activities remain ongoing with a scheduled completion around 2020.

OU 2 and OU 3 addressed residential properties impacted from smelting and near mine waste locations. The residential cleanup was completed in 2001.

OU 4 addresses groundwater contaminated from mine waste.  EPA initially provided residences with bottled water and connection to public water supplies. This response action was completed in 2003.

OU 5 will address sediment in Spring River. A sediment transport model is being developed to complete a feasibility study. A Record of Decision is scheduled for 2018 with cleanup to follow.

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Emergency Response and Removal

Cleanup has also included removal actions, or short-term cleanups, to address immediate threats to human health and the environment. Removal actions included cleanup of soils at six child care centers and 300 residences, and provision of bottled water to affected residences.

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