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Public Meeting Scheduled Oct. 25 on Agreement for Cleanup of Chicago Heights Boulevard Site in St. Louis County, Mo.

Release Date: 10/18/2012
Contact Information: Chris Whitley, 913-551-7394, whitley.christopher@epa.gov

Environmental News

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

(Lenexa, Kan., Oct. 18, 2012) - EPA Region 7 has reached an agreement with PerkinElmer, Inc., for the investigation, mitigation and cleanup of hazardous wastes at the Chicago Heights Boulevard Site in north St. Louis County, Mo. The agreement is subject to a 30-day public comment period, which begins today, before it becomes final.

EPA Region 7 will hold a public meeting to discuss the proposed agreement from 7 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. on Thursday, Oct. 25, at the First Baptist Church of Elmwood Park, 1452 Dielman Road, in north St. Louis County. Persons attending the meeting will have the opportunity to ask questions, receive information, and provide their comments about the agreement.

The Chicago Heights Boulevard Site involves a contaminated groundwater plume located in an unincorporated area of north St. Louis County. At some time before 1988, an unknown quantity of the industrial chemical trichloroethylene (TCE) was released at an industrial property located at 9970 Page Avenue, just northwest of the Elmwood Park neighborhood, and traveled through the soil and into the groundwater. Since then, TCE and other contaminants have been detected in groundwater beneath the residential area of Elmwood Park, and TCE vapors have been detected at levels of concern in five residences situated adjacent to the industrial site.

PerkinElmer, which purchased the industrial property in 1988, has worked with the Missouri Department of Natural Resources (MDNR) to identify the extent of the groundwater contamination plume at the site, and has installed vapor mitigation systems in the five affected residences.

In September 2012, MDNR transferred regulatory oversight for the site to EPA Region 7.

Today, EPA’s proposed Administrative Settlement Agreement and Order on Consent was placed on public notice. EPA’s agreement, issued under the authority of the federal Resource Conservation and Recovery Act (RCRA) and the Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation and Liability Act (CERCLA), lays out a series of tasks that PerkinElmer has agreed to perform at the site:

    • Under a Vapor Intrusion Mitigation System Design and Implementation Work Plan, PerkinElmer will continue to maintain the vapor intrusion mitigation systems that it has already installed in the five Elmwood Park residences, and install and maintain additional systems in other homes of the neighborhood where future environmental sampling may indicate a need.
    • PerkinElmer must continue its implementation of a May 2011 Supplemental Investigation Work Plan, which was developed pursuant to a consent agreement with MDNR in 1994, to further investigate the extent of hazardous waste contamination at the site. EPA may require revisions to this plan.
    • At EPA’s request, PerkinElmer must develop and submit for EPA’s approval a Source and Plume Sampling and Analysis Plan that details the work it intends to perform to define the extent of the groundwater contaminant plume at the site. Upon approval of the plan, EPA anticipates that the work required by the plan will occur in phases.
    • Within 120 days of receiving and validating the environmental sampling data gathered under the Source and Plume Sampling and Analysis Plan, PerkinElmer must submit a report to EPA detailing the work performed, as well as all relevant findings, data, observations and analyses resulting from the work. This Source and Plume Sampling and Analysis Report will be subject to EPA’s review and approval, and must include an updated human health baseline risk assessment for the site.
    • Within 30 days of EPA’s approval of the Source and Plume Sampling and Analysis Report, PerkinElmer must submit to EPA for its review and approval a work plan and schedule for conducting a Response Action Evaluation. Ultimately, PerkinElmer must submit a report that evaluates potential response actions for the site, and proposes a preferred alternative action or actions for cleanup of contamination at the site.
    • Within 30 days of EPA’s approval of PerkinElmer’s Response Action Evaluation report, PerkinElmer must submit to EPA for review and approval a Response Action Work Plan that describes the work necessary to implement the response action or actions selected by EPA, including interim actions. Upon approval of this plan, EPA anticipates that the work required by the plan will occur in phases.
    • Within 60 days of completing any interim actions, and within 60 days of completing all of its work under the Response Action Work Plan, PerkinElmer must submit reports to EPA for review and approval that detail all of the work performed and all relevant findings, data, observations and analyses resulting from the work.
The public has until Nov. 19, 2012, to submit comments to EPA Region 7 on the proposed agreement, a copy of which is available at www.epa.gov/region7/cleanup/chicago_heights. As part of the Administrative Record file for the site, copies of the agreement are also available for public inspection at three local libraries: St. Louis County Library, 1640 S. Lindbergh, St. Louis, Mo., 63131; Mid-County Library, 7821 Maryland Avenue, St. Louis, Mo., 63105; and Indian Trails Library, 8400 Delport Drive, St. Louis, Mo., 63114.

Comments on the proposed agreement will be accepted orally or in writing at the Oct. 25 public meeting, or they may be sent in writing by mail or email, no later than the close of business on Nov. 19, 2012, to: Belinda Young, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, Office of Public Affairs, 11201 Renner Boulevard, Lenexa, Kan., 66219, young.belinda@epa.gov.

EPA Region 7 will consider all comments submitted during the public comment period, and may seek to modify or decline to enter the final order of the agreement if the Agency determines that comments disclose facts or considerations that indicate the order is inappropriate, improper or inadequate.

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Learn more about EPA’s work at the Chicago Heights Boulevard Site

More about the site is available from the Missouri Department of Natural Resources

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