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EPA Announces Intent to Issue Navy Approval to Dispose of PCBs

Release Date: 12/19/2005
Contact Information: Benjamin N. Haynes, (404) 562-8027, haynes.benjamin@epa.gov

(ATLANTA, December 19, 2005) The U. S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) proposes to issue the U.S. Navy an Approval to Dispose of Polychlorinated Biphenyls (PCBs) contained in electrical cable and other non-liquid materials and equipment onboard the decommissioned USS Oriskany, a Korean War era aircraft carrier.

The Navy has prepared the vessel for reefing off the coast of Pensacola, Fla., by removing or minimizing materials that may adversely impact the marine environment. An estimated 700 pounds of PCBs contained in felt and foam gaskets, electrical cable, insulation, and heat-resistant paint remain aboard the vessel. In accordance with the Toxic Substances Control Act (TSCA) and its implementing Federal PCB regulations, the Navy applied for a risk-based PCB disposal approval to sink the vessel with the non-liquid PCBs onboard. EPA may approve such an application if it finds that the disposal action will not pose an unreasonable risk of injury to health or the environment.

EPA invites interested parties to review and comment on the draft approval and application materials today through January 19, 2006. These documents are also on file in EPA’s office in Atlanta, Ga., and posted on EPA Region 4’s Web site at: www.epa.gov/region4/air/lead/pcbwebpage.htm , and the PCB home page maintained by EPA headquarters at www.epa.gov/pcb/ . Written comments on the draft approval, postmarked no later than 30 calendar days from today’s date should be sent to: Mr. Craig S. Brown, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, Region 4, Atlanta Federal Center, 61 Forsyth Street, Atlanta, GA 30303-8909.

EPA will hold a public meeting on the Oriskany reefing draft approval at the Pensacola Junior College Hagler Auditorium, January 10, 2006, from 6:30 - 8:30 pm. The meeting will be preceded by an informal poster session at 5 p.m., where subject matter experts from the Navy and EPA will be available to answer questions about the project.