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EPA proposes Astoria Marine Construction Company site for National Priorities List

Release Date: 03/08/2011
Contact Information: Ken Marcy, EPA NPL Coordinator, (206) 890-0591, marcy.ken@epa.gov, Tony Brown, EPA Public Affairs, (206) 553-1203, brown.anthony@epa.gov

(Seattle – March 8, 2011) Today, EPA proposed the Astoria Marine Construction Company (AMCC) site, located in Astoria, Oregon, to the National Priorities List, the Agency’s list of the most contaminated sites in the nation. The site occupies approximately eight acres of low-lying land adjacent to tidal flats. If listed as proposed, the site will be cleaned up under the agency’s cleanup program known as Superfund.

Sediments in the Lewis and Clark River and Jeffers Slough have been contaminated along with soil and groundwater at the AMCC site by decades of shipyard activities. Site contaminants include petroleum, heavy metals, polyaromatic hydrocarbons, and organotins.

“A full evaluation and cleanup of contamination at the Astoria Marine facility can be part of a healthier future for the Columbia River Basin," said Dan Opalski, EPA Region 10 Superfund Director in Seattle. "The Superfund listing will provide a clear framework for EPA to work with the company to identify and complete necessary cleanup actions in coordination with its ongoing operations.”

If the site is added to the National Priorities List, EPA will work with tribes as well as local, state and federal government agencies to clean up the AMCC site. Cleanup of the site would also support the Columbia River Toxics Reduction Action Plan.

The AMCC site is a marine shipyard that has been active since 1924. The shipyard constructed wooden boats and ships, except for brief periods during World War II and the Korean War when the company constructed military vessels including minesweepers and tugs. Currently, AMCC conducts manufacturing and repair on small marine vessels.

A final decision regarding inclusion of the site on the National Priorities List will occur after consideration of public comments, which will be accepted for 60 days. The Federal Register Notice, with instructions on how to comment on the proposed Astoria Marine Construction Company site, is available at
http://www.epa.gov/superfund/sites/npl/current.htm.

For additional information on EPA’s NPL visit: http://go.usa.gov/4Kd

The Lewis and Clark River and the Columbia River have been designated as critical habitat and migratory pathways for endangered or threatened fish and are important to sport and commercial fishing.

Copies of supporting documentation for the proposed listing are also available for review at the Astoria Public Library, located at 450 10th St., and the EPA Region 10 Superfund Records Center located at 1201 Sixth Avenue in Seattle.

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