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Recovery Act Funding to Accelerate Cleanup, Boost Economy, Create Jobs and Protect Human Health at Long Island Hazardous Waste Site--Old Roosevelt Field

Release Date: 04/15/2009
Contact Information: Beth Totman (212) 637-3662, totman.elizabeth@epa.gov

(New York, N.Y.) – The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency today announced between $5 million and $10 million in new funding through the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 for the Old Roosevelt Field Superfund site in Garden City, New York. The money will accelerate the hazardous waste clean-up already underway at the site. It will also jumpstart the local economy by creating jobs in the Garden City area. This Recovery Act funding is part of the $600 million that Congress appropriated to the Federal Superfund remedial program.

“EPA has an answer to these challenging economic times,” said EPA Administrator Lisa P. Jackson. “Under the Recovery Act, we're getting harmful pollutants and dangerous chemicals out of these communities and putting jobs and investment back in.”

EPA will use the estimated $5-10 million in Recovery Act funds allocated to this site to accelerate the cleanup of the contaminated ground water and to protect two municipal well fields that extract water from the site’s sole-source aquifer. EPA anticipates that accelerating the cleanup of the ground water will eliminate the need for treatment of the public water supply in the future. Given the risks associated with chlorinated solvent contamination in groundwater, shortening the cleanup time frame will be protective of the more than 8,000 people who get their drinking water from the public water supply.

“The Superfund program lends itself perfectly to the goals of the Recovery Act,” said George Pavlou, Acting Regional Administrator. “New jobs will be created immediately because these projects are ‘shovel ready,’ and the surrounding communities benefit because the funds allow us to continue the important work of cleaning up the sites.”

The Federal Superfund program was created in 1980 to clean up uncontrolled hazardous waste sites that pose unacceptable risks to human health and the environment. Superfund sites are often found in industrial areas hardest hit by the recession. Superfund cleanups are major construction projects which employ thousands of workers nationwide. The Superfund program is implementing new or expanded cleanup actions at 50 sites around the country and since it began, the program has completed construction of remedies at more than 1,060 of the 1,596 sites on its National Priorities List.

By starting or speeding up cleanup at Superfund sites, Recovery Act funding is also increasing the speed with which these sites are returned to productive use. When a Superfund site is redeveloped, it can offer significant economic benefits to local communities including future job creation.

President Obama signed the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act on February 17, 2009 and has directed the Recovery Act be implemented with unprecedented transparency and accountability. To that end, the American people can see how every dollar is being invested at www.Recovery.gov.

For more information on this and other sites funded through ARRA, please visit: http://www.epa.gov/region02/eparecovery For more information about the Old Roosevelt Field site, visit http://www.epa.gov/region02/superfund/npl/oldroosevelt.

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