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Waste Site Cleanup & Reuse in New England
  Serving Connecticut, Maine, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, Rhode Island, Vermont & 9 Tribal Nations
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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
 North Smithfield,  Rhode Island
 Providence County
 Street Address: OXFORD RD
 Zip Code: 02876

 EPA ID #: RID093212439
 Site ID #: 0101265
 Site Aliases:

 Site Responsibility: Federal, Potentially Responsible Parties

 Proposed Date 12/30/1982
 Final Date 09/08/1982

Site Description
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The Landfill and Resource Recovery, Inc. (L&RR) site is a 28-acre landfill on a 36-acre parcel of land. The site originally was a sand and gravel pit and was used for small-scale refuse disposal from 1927 to 1974. In 1974, the site was sold and developed into a large-scale disposal facility accepting commercial, municipal, and industrial wastes. Until 1979, an estimated 1 million gallons of hazardous wastes were accepted and disposed of with other wastes in the central portion of the landfill. The hazardous wastes included many types of bulk and drummed organic and inorganic materials in liquid, sludge, and solid forms. In 1979, the operator placed a polyvinyl chloride cover over the area containing hazardous waste to prevent rainwater from entering. Landfilling of commercial and residential wastes continued until 1985, when the owners closed the landfill and placed another synthetic cover over most of the landfill. Soil was placed over the synthetic cover and it was partially planted with vegetation. Although the area is still rural, there are approximately 10,000 residents in a 25-square-mile area; the area appears to be undergoing a substantial growth in residential development. Within a 1/2 mile radius of the site, there are fewer than 50 residences and no multi-residential housing developments. More than 3,000 people live within 3 miles of the site. An industrial park is located approximately 3,000 feet to the north, and Air National Guard installations are located approximately 1,000 feet to the east and 3,000 feet to the south of the site. Most, if not all, residences in the site's vicinity obtain their drinking water from individual wells. Trout Brook, adjacent to the site, and the Slatersville Reservoir, into which it discharges, are used for fishing and other recreation, but are not public water supply sources.

Threats and Contaminants
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The air at the landfill was contaminated with volatile organic compounds (VOCs) including carbon tetrachloride, chloroform, and benzene. The on-site groundwater is contaminated with arsenic, lead, and VOCs from waste liquids disposed of on site and from rainwater entering the landfilled wastes, causing contamination to seep into the groundwater. The surface water on the site is contaminated with lead. The immediate health threat at the site was from uncontrolled gaseous emissions from the landfill. The landfill closure in 1994 and 1995, including construction of landfill gas collection and enclosed flare treatment system, minimized threats of contamination in air, groundwater and surface water. The landfill is enclosed by a chain link fence. The only significant environmental threat was to the wetlands surrounding the site. The cleanup action minimized soil erosion from the landfill and the resultant filling in of the nearby wetlands.

Cleanup Approach
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The site is being addressed in a long-term remedial phase focusing on cleanup of the entire site.

Response Action Status
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Entire Site In 1977, the owner installed monitoring wells on site to ensure compliance with State regulations. The owner closed the landfill in 1985, and 3/4 of the site was covered with a synthetic cap to minimize infiltration of rain and melted snow. Soil also was used to establish a vegetative cover. The cap was designed and built with gas vents to prevent the build-up of gases under the cap. The selected long-term remedy for this site, as documented in the 1988 ROD, includes: installation of more substantial fencing; stabilization of the steep side slopes of the landfill and installation of a synthetic cap over the uncapped area of the landfill, with establishment of a vegetative cover over the entire landfill; collection and thermal destruction of underlying gases in an enclosed flare; and groundwater and air monitoring. In 1994 and 1995, under EPA supervision, the parties potentially responsible for site contamination completed the design and construction of these cleanup actions. Long-term operation and maintenance activities are currently underway and will continue until established cleanup goals are met. Additional groundwater investigation has been performed over the years since the landfill closure, and additional study is being planned to determined a need for a potential response to the groundwater contamination

Enforcement HighlightsThe landfill closure began in 1985 pursuant to a 1983 Court Order and Agreement between the State and the landfill owner. In 1990, the EPA issued an Administrative Order to 14 potentially responsible parties requiring the parties to design and construct the final cleanup remedies. In 1992, EPA also entered into a de minimis settlement with nearly 50 potentially responsible parties to recover $3 million in environmental investigations costs. In 1997, EPA, the State, and the potentially responsible parties performing final cleanup under the 1990 Order, entered into a settlement for long-term operation and maintenance of the landfill. Under that settlement agreement, the private parties agreed to contribute $525,000 to purchase conservation easements within the Blackstone River Valley National Heritage Corridor, including purchase of a 30-acre former Lonsdale Drive-In Theater in the area identified by the Corridor Commission as the most significant wildlife marsh in northern Rhode Island. As part of that agreement, the parties also reimbursed EPA and the State for $200,000 in past costs, paid $400,000 in civil penalties for alleged violations of the Order, and are financially responsible for government oversight over the 30-year operational period. The United States also received $200,000 for damages to natural resources under the trusteeship of the Department of the Interior. These funds were directed by the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Services for the wetland restoration project at the former Lonsdale Drive-In. This work was completed in 2003 by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, the State, and other local partners.

Environmental Progress
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Construction of landfill closure at the site have been completed. Closing the landfill, installing a cover, stabilizing steep side slopes, destroying underlying gases, and building a fence to limit access to the landfill have reduced the potential for exposure to hazardous materials at the site while operation and maintenance activities continue.

Current Site Status
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EPA signed a Record of Decision (ROD) in September 1988, requiring construction of a landfill cap and an enclosed flare to thermally treat the landfill gases. The remedy was eventually completed in the summer of 1995. Since that time, the potentially responsible parties (PRPs) have been operating and maintaining the remedy as well as conducting monitoring to ensure the remedy remains protective.

Groundwater investigation in 2013 and 2014 showed contamination extending beyond the landfill cap, heading towardsTrout Brook Pond, and even under the Pond in bedrock groundwater monitoring well. Additional groundwater study is currently being planned. EPA, with the assistance of the PRPs, also conducted two rounds of testing in the Spring and Fall of 2014 of nearby residential wells which found no contamination.

While the most recent 5-Year review in 2014 has determined that the remedy is currently protective of human health and the environment; it also identified the following issues that call into question the long term protectiveness of the remedy: (a) institutional controls are still required on a number of parcels to generally restrict the use of groundwater and surface water, and prohibit use of the property in any way that would disturb remedial measures taken, and (b) the ongoing investigation into the nature and extent of the groundwater plume beyond the landfill boundary and an evaluation of the need for a response (if appropriate) must be completed. In June of 2015, EPA informed several potentially responsible parties that an OU-2 remedial investigation and feasibility study (RI/FS) are required to determine a remedy for the groundwater and other media at the Site.

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:
Administrative Record Index, OU 01 Record of Decision (ROD), September 29, 1988 (747 KB)  
Administrative Record Index, OU 2 Explanation of Significant Differences (ESD), May 01, 1991, (461 KB)  
Administrative Record (AR) Index, De Minimis Settlement, January 30, 1992, (550 KB)  

Reports and Studies:
Five Year Review Report, September 10, 1999 (1384KB)  
Second Five Year Review Report, September 28, 2004  
Third Five Year Review Report, September 02, 2009 (4.57 MB)  
Addendum to Third Five Year Review Report, August 27, 2012 (953 KB)  
Fourth Five-Year Review Report, September 25, 2014 (29.6 MB)  

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

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

Site Repositories
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Municipal Annex Building, 85 Smithfield Road, North Smithfield, RI 02895

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: Anna Krasko
Address: US Environmental Protection Agency
5 Post Office Square, Suite 100
Mail Code OSRR07-1
Boston, MA 02109-3912
Phone #: 617-918-1232
E-Mail Address: krasko.anna@epa.gov

EPA Community Involvement Coordinator: Sarah White
Address: US Environmental Protection Agency
5 Post Office Square, Suite 100
Mail Code ORA01-1
Boston, MA 02109-3912
Phone #: 617-918-1026
E-Mail Address: White.Sarah@epa.gov

State Agency Contact: Paul Kulpa
Address: RIDEM
Office of Waste Management
235 Promenade Street
Providence, RI 02908-5767
Phone #: 401-222-2797
E-Mail Address: paul.kulpa@DEM.RI.GOV


Serving Connecticut, Maine, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, Rhode Island, Vermont, & 10 Tribal Nations
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Last updated on Wednesday, November 4th, 2015
URL: http://www.epa.gov/region1/superfund/sites/l&rr