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EPA proposes Hartford, Ill., site for Superfund List

Release Date: 09/23/2009
Contact Information: Mick Hans, 312-353-5050, hans.mick@epa.gov Maggie Carson, 217-558-1538, carson.maggie@illinois.gov

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
No. 09-OPA176

(CHICAGO - Sept. 23, 2009) U.S. Environmental Protection Agency has proposed adding the Chemetco site, a closed copper smelter in Hartford, Ill., to the Superfund National Priorities List of hazardous waste sites. Sites on the list are eligible for additional study and resources under EPA's Superfund program. A 60-day public comment period about the proposed listing begins today.

The Chemetco site is on Illinois Route 3 in Madison County, about two miles south of Hartford. It was a secondary copper smelter from 1969 to 2001 before filing Chapter 7 bankruptcy. More than 500,000 cubic yards of processing slag, sludge and other hazardous materials were left in different areas of the 230-acre site. Elevated levels of the heavy metals copper, lead and cadmium have been found in sediments in on-site wetlands and nearby Long Lake. If added to the NPL, Chemetco will be eligible for further analysis and development of cleanup options by EPA in partnership with Illinois EPA.

In EPA Region 5, the Gratiot County Golf Course, a contaminated soil and fly ash site in St. Louis, Mich., was also proposed for the NPL today. Three previously proposed Region 5 sites were formally added to the NPL: Lane Street Ground Water Contamination in Elkhart, Ind., Little Scioto River in Marion, Ohio, and Amcast Industrial Corp. in Cedarburg, Wis. Nationally, 11 new sites were added to the NPL and 10 sites were proposed for addition to the list. Under the NPL process, sites are first proposed and public comments considered before a determination is made to formally add a site to the list.

To date, there have been 1,607 sites on the NPL. Of these sites, 336 have been deleted resulting in 1,271 sites currently on the NPL (including the 11 new final sites added in today's rulemaking). With the proposal of the 10 new sites, there are 66 proposed sites awaiting final agency action: 61 in the general Superfund section and five in the federal facilities section. There are a total of 1,337 final and proposed sites.

Links to the Federal Register notice, information on submitting comments, background on the NPL process and summaries of the sites newly added or proposed are at http://epa.gov/superfund/sites/npl/current.htm.

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