W.R. Grace & Co.
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EPA Project Manager
Ms. Estena A. McGhee
U.S. Environmental Protection Agency Region 3
Mail Stop: 3LC20
1650 Arch Street
Philadelphia, PA 19103-2029
- In July 1992, EPA issued a RCRA permit to WR Grace.
- Grace conducted extensive investigations of soil, groundwater and surface water throughout the late 1980s and 1990s. They have implemented remedial measures including groundwater recovery and treatment, soil vapor extraction, and waste removal and disposal. The groundwater recovery and treatment system began operation in 1989 and continues operation with five recovery wells leading to the granular activated carbon treatment system.
- WR Grace submitted the CMS report in February, 1999. EPA reviewed the CMS report and the Human Health Risk Assessment and this report was accepted on April 5, 2006. A Statement of Basis (SB) was signed by EPA on June 29, 2006. The purpose of the SB was to explain EPA's proposed remedy for the Facility; provide a summary of investigation results used in the remedy selection process, and to solicit public comments on the proposed remedy prior to EPA making its final remedy decision.
- With the SB, EPA proposed to remediate groundwater contamination at the Facility through a combination of groundwater treatment and monitoring and monitored natural attenuation. On July 13, 2006, EPA placed an announcement in the Columbia Flier to notify the public of EPA's proposed remedy for the Facility and of the location of the Administrative Record.
- The Final Remedy was issued in the Final Decision and Response to Comments (FDRTC) document on September 14, 2006. The Final Remedy will be implemented through a permit modification to the corrective action permit (the "Permit") issued by EPA to W.R. Grace on July 10, 1992 under Section 3004(u) of the Resource Conservation and Recovery Act ("RCRA"), 42 U.S.C. Section 6924(u). The Permit, which on its terms expired on August 14, 2002, was administratively extended by EPA until the effective date of a new or modified corrective action permit.
- EPA issued a permit modification to the existing permit for the implement of the Final Remedy on November 6, 2007. The permit was effective on November 30, 2007. The requirements of the permit modification include the continual operation of the groundwater recovery and treatment system and the main site and the remediation of groundwater at the Former Landfill Area using monitored natural attenuation (MNA) until the groundwater Cleanup Standards are achieved. Additionally, a title notice has been filed gives notice of the prohibition for the development of onsite wells for drinking water or other domestic use at the Facility. WRGrace has submitted a Corrective Measures Implementation (CMI) workplan for the implementation of the corrective measures selected in the final decision.
- On June 25, 2008, EPA gave conditional approval to the CMI workplan submitted on May 21, 2008. Financial assurance was received in September 2008 by an irrevocable trust and letter of credit. The 5-year comprehensive sampling report was submitted on November 14, 2008 and is being reviewed by EPA.
- WR Grace is located in Columbia, Maryland, northeast of Route 32 and north/northwest of Cedar Lane. The facility is approximately 125 acres. The Middle Patuxent River is located just east of the Grace property. The property has been owned and operated by Grace since the 1950s. Until 1997, the facility served as the corporate research and development center, in support of the specialty chemical, building materials, and biomedical components of Grace's business lines. The facility was then referred to as the Washington Research Center, or WRC. In 1997, the specialty chemical unit of Grace, Grace-Davison took over the management of the property, and subsequently relocated their headquarters to the Columbia facility. Today the majority of the buildings are used as offices.
- Grace has worked closely with its two primary adjacent property owners Howard Research and Development Corporation (HRD) which is a subsidiary of The Rouse Company and Howard County. HRD and Howard County have plans to establish a Middle Patuxent Environmental Area (MPEA) to cover hundreds of acres of Howard County. Portions of the planned MPEA involve property owned by HRD that is to be deeded over to Howard County. Two of these areas are adjacent to the Grace property.
- The contaminants of concern include trichloroethene (TCE), 1,1,2,2-tetrachloroethane, tetrachlorethene, 1,1-dichloroethene, 1,1-dichloroethane, 1,2-dichloroethane, and trichlorofluoromethane
- No onsite wells for drinking water or other domestic use at the Facility. A deed restriction has been used as the mechanism to list the groundwater restriction for successors-in-title to the property. Institutional Controls Established to Property identifying area where onsite groundwater use is not allowed (approximately 44 acres) and the.groundwater restriction area on google map.< Enforcement and Permit Tools: Corrective Action Permit requires groundwater pump & treat and monitored natural attenuation, prohibition on potable well installation, requirement to include deed notice Engineering Controls Established - Groundwater Control - Pump and treat system.
- Some of the site’s key documents of interest are accessible below:
- Environmental Indicator Determination - Human Exposures [PDF, 6 pages, 24 KB, About PDF]
- Environmental Indicator Determination - Groundwater [PDF, 8 pages, 19 KB, About PDF]
- All documents and reports regarding this facility also can be reviewed in person at these locations:
U.S. EPA Region III
Land & Chemicals Division - RCRA
1650 Arch Street-11th Floor
Philadelphia, PA 19103
Call for an appointment.
- Submit a FOIA Request
Get instructions on how to submit a FOIA request. Additional fee for requests over 100 pages.
|W C Grace||W C Grace Geospatial PDF [PDF, 2.39 MB, 1 page, About PDF]|
Click on a thumbnail to enlarge the photo or GeoSpatial PDF)
- The facility is under continued use.
- The EPA is dedicated to providing you with timely and accurate information about our work at this site. If you have any questions or concerns, please contact the EPA Project Manager: Ms. Estena A. McGhee (215)-814-3433.