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Waste Site Cleanup & Reuse in New England
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 Site Type: Long Term/National Priorities List (NPL) Click to see more about Site Type and how it is used?


Map this site in Cleanups in My Community
 Bennington,  Vermont
 Bennington County
 Street Address: OFF HOUGHTON LANE
 Zip Code: 05201

 EPA ID #: VTD981064223
 Site ID #: 0101493
 Site Aliases:

 Site Responsibility: Federal, Potentially Responsible Parties

 Proposed Date 06/24/1988
 Final Date 03/31/1989

Site Description
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The Bennington Landfill, located off Houghton Lane in Bennington, is a 15-acre municipal sanitary landfill. The area was a sand and gravel pit until it began operation as a landfill in 1969. The Town of Bennington purchased the site in 1985. Several Bennington industries dumped liquid wastes into an unlined lagoon on the site from 1969 to 1975. Town records indicate that polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs), organic solvents, and lead were disposed of at the site. The lagoon was closed in 1975; workers landfilled it after attempts to dry it up failed. An underground drainage system built in 1976 is designed to lower the groundwater level below the landfill. The system discharges through a culvert into an unlined, ponded area. In 1986, the Vermont Department of Environmental Conservation detected contaminants in the groundwater discharging from the culvert into the ponded area. Approximately 2,200 residents located within 3 miles of the site use private wells. The area surrounding the site is mainly rural residential. Morgan Spring, a bedrock water source located 3 miles south of the landfill, is used regularly to supplement the Bennington water system.

Threats and Contaminants
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Groundwater discharging through a culvert from the underground drainage system beneath the site contains PCBs from contaminated landfill soils, heavy metals including lead and arsenic, and volatile organic compounds (VOCs) including benzene and xylene. The State believes that the ponded area had caught fire in the past and found several flammable materials in it. The site is not completely fenced, thereby leaving the potential for direct contact with contaminants. A freshwater wetland is located 500 feet east of the culvert, and may be subject to contamination from site runoff. Hewitt Brook, which originates from this wetland, is used for trout fishing.

Cleanup Approach
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The Site was addressed in a two phase approach. The first phase was a Non-Time-Critical Removal Action (NTCRA) which involved the placement of a cap on the landfill, diversion of surface and groundwater, and collection and treatment of the discharge from the underdrain. The second phase was an comprehensive remedial investigation, that confirmed that no further action beyond the NTCRA was necessary.

Response Action Status
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Initial Action In 1994, the EPA and the potentially responsible parties began a short-term action to minimize the migration of contaminants from the landfill into the groundwater. An agreement between the EPA, State, and potentially responsible parties, to conduct the work stated above, was finalized in 1997. These actions will consist of installing a composite, low permeability cap with drainage controls over the site, excavating contaminated soils and sediments and consolidating them within the existing landfill, collecting the site leachate, managing the landfill gases, and providing site management and institutional controls. Design work for the landfill cap began in December 1996 and construction began in September 1997. The landfill cap was completed in 1999.

Entire Site A potentially responsible party began an investigation into the nature and extent of contamination at the site in mid-1991. The study will assess the risks to human health and the environment. The investigation was completed in 1997. A No Further Action Record of Decision (ROD) was signed by EPA in September 1998. The ROD is the final action at the site. All necessary cleanup activities are in the operation and maintenance phase.

Monitoring & Inspections Annual monitoring and inspections occur at the Site.

Five-Year Reviews A Five-Year Review was performed in 2004. The Five-Year Review Report concluded that the response actions are protective of human health and the environment.

Environmental Progress
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The initial actions performed at the Bennington Landfill site have reduced immediate threats to public health and the environment while site studies continue. The leachate collection system was installed in 1997. Leachate from the underdrain pipe no longer drains into the site groundwater and wetlands. The up gradient interceptor trench was also installed in 1997. PCB contaminated soils were excavated and placed within the limits of the landfill. A multibarrier landfill cap was constructed over the entire landfill. All contamination has now been covered by the cap and leachate is being collected and treated by the leachate collection system. Maintenance and monitoring is being performed to protect the public.

Current Site Status
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The landfill cap of this former municipal landfill, which was listed in 1989, was completed in 1999. A Consent Decree was entered in August 1997 that covered the construction and maintenance of this cap. In September 1998, EPA signed the only and final Record of Decision (ROD) selecting No Further Action as the remedial response. Therefore, no additional response actions are planned for this site. The cap and leachate collection and treatment system are being operated and maintained by the potentially responsible parties. Oversight of their work will continue. A Five-Year Review was performed in 2004 and made the determination that the response actions continue to be protective of public health and the environment. As of February 2008, no change in site status has occurred since the five year review.

Site Photos
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Links to Other Site Information
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Disclaimer Instructions about PDF

Newsletters & Press Releases:
Press Releases about this project  

Federal Register Notices:
Final NPL Listing  

Administrative Records:
De Minimis Administrative Record Index, August 1, 1998 (414 KB)  

Reports and Studies:
Five Year Review Report, September 21, 2004 (246KB)  
Second Five Year Review Report, September 11, 2009 (3.89 MB)  
Third Five Year Review Report, September 16, 2014 (6.41 MB)  

Decision Documents:
View Records of Decision (RODS) on-line (EPA HQ)  
Institutional Controls for this Site  

Other Links:
NPL Site Narrative at Listing:  
Site Progress Profile  

Site Repositories
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Bennington Public Library, 101 Silver Street, Bennington, VT 05201

OSRR Records and Information Center, 1st Floor, 5 Post Office Square, Suite 100 (HSC), Boston, MA 02109-3912 (617) 918-1440

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EPA Remedial Project Manager: Almerinda Silva
Address: US Environmental Protection Agency
5 Post Office Sq., Suite 100
Mail Code: OSRR07-4
Boston, MA 02109-3912
Phone #: 617-918-1246
E-Mail Address: silva.almerinda@epa.gov

EPA Community Involvement Coordinator: Emily Bender
Address: US Environmental Protection Agency
5 Post Office Sq., Suite 100
Mail Code: ORA01-1
Boston, MA 02109-3912
Phone #: 617-918-1037
E-Mail Address: bender.emily@epa.gov

State Agency Contact: John Schmeltzer
Address: VT Dept. Environmental Conservation
One National Life Drive
Davis One
Montpelier, VT 05602-3704
Phone #: 802-249-5620
E-Mail Address:


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Last updated on Monday, January 5th, 2015
URL: http://www.epa.gov/region1/superfund/sites/bennington