Pacific Southwest, Region 9: Superfund
Serving Arizona, California, Hawaii, Nevada, the Pacific Islands, and Tribal Nations
Brown & Bryant, Inc. (Arvin Plant)
EPA #: CAD052384021
Congressional District: 20
EPA has completed the 3rd Five-Year Review for the Operable Unit 1, surface & below surface soil down to 65 feet (A-zone soils). The aim of the review was to find out how well cleanup actions continue to protect human health & the environment.
3rd Brown Bryant 5YR.pdf
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Description and History
NPL Listing History
NPL Status: Final
Proposed Date: 06/24/88
Final Date: 10/04/89
The Brown & Bryant, Inc. (Arvin Plant) covers about 5 acres in Arvin, California. The company began operations in 1960 as a formulator of agricultural chemicals including fertilizers, herbicides, insecticides, and fumigants. During inspections by State agencies, improper handling and disposal of hazardous wastes at the facility have been documented. Accidental spills of pesticides have occurred at the site. In 1979, an evaporation pond was built in the southeastern corner of the site. When the facility was operating, the pond received pesticide rinse water and surface runoff from the site. As a result of heavy rains, this pond overflowed on at least two occasions. The closest public well is located about 1,700 feet south and downgradient of the site. The Arvin Community Services District maintains six municipal groundwater wells within 1 mile of the site. The public water system supplies drinking water to approximately 7,800 people and irrigates about 19,600 acres of cropland. The area surrounding the site is industrial, agricultural, and residential.
Contaminants and Risks
- Soil and Sludges
Soil contains numerous pesticides such as dinoseb, ethylene dibromide and other fumigants. The groundwater also is contaminated with pesticides. People who accidentally ingest or come into direct contact with contaminated groundwater or soil may be at risk.
Who is Involved
This site is being addressed through Federal, State, and potentially responsible parties' actions
Interim Actions: In 1988, under State supervision, Brown & Bryant, Inc., excavated the heavily contaminated soil under the pond and installed a liner. An additional removal of dinoseb-contaminated soil was conducted in 1991. The excavated soil was cleaned, treated, and returned to the ground. The water used to clean the soil was treated by an innovative technology called ultraviolet/ozone. This process uses special ultraviolet lights and ozone gas to break down hazardous chemicals. In addition, more monitoring wells were installed to detect any contaminants migrating to the Arvin Municipal wells and to monitor the perched water plume.
Entire Site: The EPA began an investigation in 1990 to develop a long-term solution to the groundwater and soil contamination problems. A remedy was selected in 1993 that includes consolidation of contaminated soil, installation of a cap over the consolidated soil, and extraction and treatment of water from the first water-bearing unit. Design of the remedies was completed in early 1997. A Resource Conservation and Recovery Act (RCRA) cap and a non-RCRA cap was built over the Brown and Bryant facility in 1998.
Area-Wide Groundwater: An investigation to explore the nature and extent of the area-wide groundwater contamination was completed in the 2005 Remedial Investigation and Feasibility Study. A Proposed Plan was sent out for public comment in June 2007, and the final remedy was selected in a Record of Decision signed 9/28/07.
Groundwater Remedy: The overall strategy to reduce groundwater contamination involves extraction and treatment of the groundwater in the shallower A-zone, which is the source of contamination to the B-zone. The remedy will rely on monitored natural attenuation (MNA) in the B-zone groundwater, which is a potential source of drinking water. In addition, institutional controls will be placed on the Site and nearby properties to prevent the use of B-zone groundwater until drinking water standards are attained. The remedy also requires relocation of the Arvin City Well CW-1 to remove the threat of cross contamination from the A-zone and the B-zone to the C-zone.
The California Department of Public Health [CDPH] is working with the Arvin Community Services District [ACSD] to prepare the workplan for replacement of CW-1 well.
Under orders from the State, Brown & Bryant, Inc., conducted a limited investigation of the site and removed some of the contaminated soil. However, in 1989, the firm went out of business, leaving the EPA and the State to solve the remaining contamination problems.
Cleanup Results to Date
The removal and treatment of the heavily contaminated soil has reduced the potential for exposure to hazardous materials while the EPA and the State are planning additional cleanup actions at the Brown & Bryant, Inc. (Arvin Plant) site.
Potentially Responsible Parties
Potentially responsible parties (PRPs) refers to companies that are potentially responsible for generating, transporting, or disposing of the hazardous waste found at the site.
Online information about the PRPs for the site is not yet available.
Documents and Reports
Public Information Repositories
The public information repositories for the site are at the following locations:
Kern County Library
123 A Street
Arvin, CA 93203
EPA Site Manager
75 Hawthorne Street
San Francisco, CA 94105
EPA Community Involvement Coordinator
75 Hawthorne Street
San Francisco, CA 94105
EPA Public Information Center
8800 Cal Center Drive
After Hours (Emergency Response)