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Ruth Podems, (215) 814-5540
Henrico County, Va. - The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency announced that long-term cleanup is complete at the Rentokil, Inc. hazardous waste Superfund site here, paving the way for economic redevelopment.
"This land that once posed a severe health hazard, can now be reused to benefit the local community," said Abraham Ferdas, director of EPA’s Hazardous Site Cleanup Division. "This is a terrific example of Superfund’s goal of faster, more efficient cleanups."
Rentokil, Inc. a few miles northwest of Richmond, was a wood-treating plant that used and disposed of chromated copper arsenate and other chemicals for several decades. Once EPA discovered contamination in soil, surface and groundwater, it was placed on the agency’s list of most hazardous waste sites in 1989.
Under a consent decree between EPA and Virginia Properties, Inc.- a subsidiary of Rentokil, Inc.- the site underwent extensive cleanup, including an EPA-approved cap to stop the spread of contamination.
In 1996, EPA and the State of Virginia accepted a proposal from Virginia Properties to allow commercial redevelopment of the site by incorporating the protective cap’s design into any new buildings’ foundations which may be built.
EPA will continue to review ground water sampling results to assure that the long-term threats stay under control and the site remains protective of human health and the environment.
EPA’s mid-Atlantic region completed cleanups at a total of 14 Superfund hazardous waste sites this year, keeping pace with the national average. The nationwide total is 85 for EPA’s fiscal year ending September 30. To date, cleanups have been completed at 670 out of 1,396 sites across the country.