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2002 News Releases


Cleanup to Begin at Delatte Metals Superfund Site Near Hammond, La.

Release Date: 10/29/2002
Contact Information: For more information contact the Office of External Affairs at (214) 665-2200.

      The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and the Louisiana Department of Environmental Quality (DEQ) will soon begin cleanup at the Delatte Metals Superfund site. The cleanup will remove contaminated soils and address other issues at the site such as contaminated runoff.

      "Superfund is hard at work cleaning up sites like Delatte that threaten human health and the environment.  We look forward to returning this site to productive use," EPA Superfund Division Director Myron Knudson said.

      Keith Casanova, DEQ Administrator for Remediation Services said, "Eliminating environmental threats is one of DEQ's top priorities.  After extensive years of work, we are happy to finally be cooperating with EPA in the remediation of Delatte Metals to ensure a healthy future for this area of our state."  

      Onsite preparations for the cleanup work will begin in November 2002.  Completion is expected in the summer of 2003.  Work will include immobilizing the wastes in the soil so it can be removed and disposed off-site.  

      Also, permeable treatment walls will be installed to neutralize the acidity of the shallow ground water and limit the migration of dissolved metals. Ground water monitors will be installed to ensure the remedy is effective.

      Beginning in the 1960's, battery recycling and smelting operations at Delatte contaminated soils with lead and other metals. By the early 1980's, spent acid from batteries was stored onsite in an unlined pond. Later, the acid was pumped to an acid tank farm, then shipped off-site for recycling.

      In 1998, EPA determined there was an imminent and substantial endangerment to human health and the environment at the site.  EPA removed above-ground waste such as piles of slag, battery chips, the acid tank farm, furnace building, drums of metal-contaminated waste and tote bags of baghouse dust.

      In 1999, at the request of the Governor of Louisiana, EPA added the Delatte site to the Superfund national priorities list.

More information about Delatte is available on the Internet at