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EPA proposes cleanup plan for Ashland, Wis., Superfund Site; hearing June 29, 7 p.m.

Release Date: 06/15/2009
Contact Information: Mick Hans, 312-353-5050, hans.mick@epa.gov Patti Krause, 312-886-9506, krause.patricia@epa.gov (WDNR) John Robinson, 715-365-8976

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
No. 09-OPA108


(Chicago - June 15, 2009) U.S. Environmental Protection Agency Region 5 has proposed a cleanup plan for polluted soil, ground water and sediment at the Ashland/Northern States Power Lakefront Superfund site in Ashland, Wis. A public comment period runs June 17 to July 16. An informational meeting will be held at 7 p.m., Wednesday, June 17, at the Northern Great Lakes Visitor Center, 29270 County Highway G. A formal public hearing where comments on the plan will be accepted is set for 7 p.m., Monday, June 29, at the Northern Great Lakes Visitor Center.

EPA, with consultation from Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources, is proposing an estimated $83 million to $97 million cleanup project that includes:
* Removing soil from the most contaminated areas of Kreher Park and the Upper Bluff/Filled Ravine, thermally treating the soil on-site and re-using it or disposing of it off-site
* Using barriers to contain and stop the movement of contaminants in ground water, possibly treating the ground water in-place and adding wells to extract and treat ground water.
* Digging up wood waste and contaminated sediment near the Chequamegon Bay shore and dredging contaminated sediment offshore, covering the offshore cleanup area with six inches of clean material and treating contaminated sediment after removal or disposing of it off-site.

EPA will consider all comments before it makes a final determination, known as a "record of decision." This final plan may include changes from the proposed cleanup plan. Final construction design and then cleanup work would follow, most likely in 2011.

The Ashland/NSP Lakefront Superfund site includes several properties within the city of Ashland, including Kreher Park, and about 16 acres of sediment and surface water in Chequamegon Bay. Environmental concerns stem from a manufactured gas plant that operated in the area from 1885 to 1947. Other activities, including possible wood treatment and construction in the 1950s of a waste water treatment plant, may have added to the contamination.

Residents with questions or who need special accommodations at the June 17 or June 29 meetings may contact EPA Community Involvement Coordinator Patti Krause, 800-621-8431, Ext. 69506, 8:30 a.m. - 4:30 p.m. weekdays, or krause.patricia@epa.gov. Find more site information at http://www.epa.gov/region5/sites/ashland/index.htm

Comments on the cleanup proposal can be submitted in writing via e-mail to Krause between June 17 and July 16, or via the Internet at www.epa.gov/region5/publiccomment/ashland-pubcomment.htm; or fax 312-697-2568. Written and oral comments will be accepted at the June 29 public hearing.
http://www.epa.gov/region5/sites/ashland/index.htm.

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