Fareva Richmond Inc
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Virginia Dept of Environmental Quality
P.O. Box 1105
Richmond, VA 23218
Phone: (804) 698-4099
- Cleanup Status:
Corrective Action Underway
- Human Exposure Controls: TBA
- Groundwater Controls : TBA
Environmental information is being gathered to determine whether further investigation is warranted and whether the environmental indicators are met. A remedy decision is expected within two years.
Pfizer, through legacy Wyeth, entered the U.S. EPA's Region III Resource Conservation and Recovery Act (RCRA) Corrective Action "Facility Lead Program" in September 2006 to meet RCRA Corrective Action obligations associated with the former operation of a hazardous waste storage area. The Facility Lead approach is used by EPA Region 3 to streamline the administrative process and initiate investigations at RCRA regulated facilities more quickly. Previously, the Facility was enrolled in the Virginia Voluntary Remediation Program (VRP) to address releases of various constituents to groundwater from the Former Plant A and its associated wastewater treatment plant at the Facility. Entry into the Facility Lead Program broadened the geographic scope of the release assessment to the entire RCRA Facility. Pfizer sold the Facility to FAREVA in the Fall of 2011. FAREVA continues to operate the Facility and Pfizer continues to implement RCRA Corrective Action investigations under the Facility Lead Program with oversight by EPA.
The Facility property is comprised of 305.7 acres and is located on the southeast side of Richmond. Two primary buildings currently are located at the Facility: Plant B produces and/or packages over-the-counter medications, and Building 2300 operates as a warehouse and sample management laboratory. Past industrial operations at the property include the manufacture of pet pesticide products (flea collars, etc.) and over-the-counter medicinal products (as well as a quality control/quality assurance laboratory) at the Former Plant A, which was constructed in 1975 and demolished in 2001. A distribution center also operated at the property. A farm is located on the eastern portion of the Facility property. The land bordering the property to the north is largely wooded. The surrounding area includes properties zoned for residential, industrial, and agricultural use. A residential development is being constructed immediately south of the Facility.
During a RCRA Corrective Action Investigation, solid waste management units (SWMUs) and areas of concern (AOCs) are identified to guide the search for releases. A “Solid Waste Management Unit” is any discernible unit where solid wastes have been placed at any time, irrespective of whether the unit was intended for the management of solid or hazardous waste. SWMUs additionally include any areas where solid wastes have been routinely and systematically released. An “Area of Concern” is any area that is not a SWMU where a spill or release may have occurred. Four solid waste management units (SWMUs) and eight areas of concern (AOCs) have been identified at the RCRA Facility. One of the SWMUs was eliminated as it was incorrectly identified. EPA has provided a letter to Pfizer indicating tentative no further action, pending public review during a future public comment period, for two SWMUs and four AOCs as a result of work completed under the Facility Lead Agreement. Soil, groundwater and vapor investigations have been conducted to identify potential releases and a groundwater monitoring program has been implemented.
In 1992, a release to the ground of flea dip product from a vent pipe on the west wall of the Former Plant A was discovered. Impacted soil was excavated and disposed of off-site in two phases. In April 1993, soil extending approximately 8 feet west from the west wall of the former Plant A and 3 feet deep was excavated. In August 1993, soil extending approximately 10 feet by 35 feet along the west wall to a depth of 10 to 12 feet was excavated.
Following soil excavation, a 10,000 gallon underground storage tank which formerly contained isopropyl alcohol was removed from the area, and the area was backfilled, leveled, and compacted.
During the early 1990’s, a break in an underground process sewer line at the former Plant A waste water treatment plant was discovered and repaired.
In the late 1990’s, floor drains in the Plant B former Train Shed were connected to a sewer system. Prior to the connection, floor drains in the shed discharged to the subsurface. (Notified to EPA in early 2014.)
In 1998, the main process sewer located north of Plant B and the Distribution Center and on a west to east line parallel with Darbytown Road- continuing east to South Laburnum Road -was found to be compromised in proximity to Cornelius Creek. A new sewer line was installed where the piping was compromised.
In 2001, the former Plant A, including the former Plant A waste water treatment plant, was demolished. In addition, sewers associated with the former Plant A were excavated and removed. During the demolition and removal activities, impacted soils were encountered.
Impacted soils by the former Plant A waste water treatment plant were excavated.
Soil samples were collected throughout the demolished Plant A area, including by the flea dip excavation area and by the former waste water treatment plant area. Throughout the investigation, field meters indicated that the level of volatile organic chemicals was elevated. The analyses results showed that the concentrations of identified chemicals which remained in the soil are below screening criteria applied to soils at industrial facilities.
An investigation of impact to groundwater was conducted. Initial results detected elevated levels of contaminants in groundwater in the area of former Plant A. Subsequent investigations have been conducted to determine the nature and extent of the groundwater contamination. Contamination has been found in groundwater extending east and southeast of the Distribution Center and extending to the southeast property boundary on Darbytown Road. A long-term groundwater monitoring program was initiated in 2007. Since 2007, groundwater monitoring wells have been installed throughout the site in the path of the plume to observe constituent concentration trends and the extent of groundwater impact. In January 2012, two groundwater monitoring locations on the southeast portion of the FAREVA property were added to the monitoring program. The level of contamination in groundwater continues to be monitored in the long-term monitoring program.
Approximately in the early 2000’s, a brick lined sump receiving waste directly from the main sewer line overflowed near Cornelius Creek.
In 2001, an upstream extension of the main sewer line (AOC 4/5) that runs beneath Plant B was determined to be degraded and required replacement. Plant production was halted, the degraded sewer was line was excavated, and visibly impacted soils were excavated and disposed at an off-site facility. (Notified to EPA in early 2014.)
In 2002, oil was released from a utility building when a gauge broke. Impacted soil was removed to a depth of two to three feet below the ground surface and a temporary sump was installed to collect additional fuel drainage. Soil confirmation samples following the excavation showed that the level of total petroleum hydrocarbons was below 100 parts per million. VADEQ has issued a closure letter for the release.
In September 2005, approximately 20 feet of the main process sewer line carrying both sanitary and process water located north of Plant B and Building 2300 experienced a break. The line was repaired and the ground was treated with lime.
A survey conducted in early 2006 identified further areas of compromised piping. Additionally it was noted that the main process sewer line located north of Plant B and the Distribution Center running for 1/3 mile on a west to east line parallel with Darbytown Road- continuing east to South Laburnum Road experienced a number of breaks and spot repairs over 18 years. As a result, Wyeth installed approximately 2000 linear feet of replacement line.
In 2008 and in 2009, investigations were conducted by Pfizer to identify releases at the Facility. The locations which were sampled included sediment in Cornelius Creek, a location where the waste water sump overflowed by the Creek [Area of Concern (AOC) 1], and locations proximate to where breaks had occurred in the main sewer line that extended from north of Plant B to northeast of the Distribution Center (AOC 4/5).
At sampled locations along or by the sewer line breaks (AOC 4/5), several constituents were detected in soil. No constituents identified in soil exceeded screening criteria.
At AOC 1 (waste water sump overflow), semi-volatile organic compounds (SVOCs) were detected in soil in exceedance of screening criteria. The SVOCs included bis(2-ethylhexyl)phthalate and 2-methynaphthalene in groundwater and benzo(a)pyrene and dibenzo(a,h)anthracene in soil. The sum of a sub-class of SVOCs, polynuclear aromatic hydrocarbon compounds (PAHs), were elevated in soil.
Sediment in Cornelius Creek contained PAHs. The levels of PAHs that were detected in the sediment are within acceptable levels.
Groundwater northeast of the Distribution Center contained bis(2-ethylhexy)phthalate at levels that exceeded screening criteria. However, bis(2-ethylhexy) phthalate has not been detected in groundwater since three permanent groundwater monitoring wells were installed in the area in 2010.
In 2010, a sub-slab vapor investigation was conducted below the Building 2300 Distribution Center. The results indicated there are no current risks to workers in the Building resulting from contamination that was detected below the building.
In early 2014, Pfizer notified EPA of the potential for release to the environment associated with former forklift maintenance operations conducted at a loading dock adjacent to the rail spur until the early 2000’s. Along with the notification, Pfizer submitted plans to conduct soil sampling at locations surrounding the loading dock.
Contaminants in soil are present in the area of the Former Plant A. However, the levels of contamination that have been identified in sampled soil at the area of the Former Plant A do not exceed EPA Region 3 industrial soil screening levels.
Contaminants in soil also are present northeast of the Distribution Center in an area where breaks in the sewer occurred (SWMU 4/5) and a former sump overflowed (AOC 1). The primary contaminants of concern are PAHs; however, benzo(a)pyrene is the only PAH that exceeds its industrial soil screening level of 210 µg/kg. Benzo(a)pyrene was detected in surface soil at concentrations ranging from 28-1400 µg/kg. Though most individual PAHs do not exceed screening criteria, total PAHs in soil by the area of AOC 1 are elevated.
Contaminants are routinely monitored in onsite groundwater broadly throughout the RCRA Corrective Action Facility. Chloroform is the most widespread contaminant on site; other contaminants detected above screening values include 1,4 dioxane, 1,1,2,2 tetrachloroethane, tetrachloroethylene (PCE), trichloroethylene (TCE) and bis(2- ethylhexy) phthalate. Current data indicate that the levels of these contaminants in groundwater are either not detected or within acceptable levels throughout the property and at the property boundary. Data to date indicate a generally decreasing trend in the level of contamination that has been found in groundwater at the Facility. The maximum chloroform detection in onsite groundwater in October 2013 was 39 µg/L. The maximum contaminant level (MCL) for total trihalomethanes (which includes chloroform) allowed in a public drinking water supply is 80 µg/L. There is no current or projected use of the groundwater for drinking water at the site. Since concentrations of contaminants in groundwater at the property boundary are below applicable screening values and do not appear to be increasing at this time, an off-site groundwater investigation is not currently warranted.
The need for institutional controls, such as deed restrictions, will be evaluated in the corrective action decision making process. Institutional controls to address groundwater contamination are anticipated.
- RCRA Facility Investigation Workplan (2008) [22.7 MB , 172 pages, About PDF]
- Historical Groundwater Data Summary Through February 2013[1.98 MB , 13 pages, About PDF]
- Historical Chloroform through October 2013[377 KB , 1 page, About PDF]
- Groundwater Summary Table October 2013[105 K , 1 page, About PDF]
- Pfizer Summary Update 2010 [31.5 MB , 29 pages, About PDF]
- RCRA Investigations - Pfizer 2009 [16 pp, 1.5 MB, About PDF]
- Wyeth (Pfizer) Final Report 2006[ 33 pp, 1.2 MB, 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.
Some of the site’s key documents of interest are accessible below:
|Fareva Richmond Inc|
Click on a thumbnail to enlarge the photo)
The property was sold to Fareva, a European-based contract manufacturing company, in the Fall,2011. Under agreement of the sale, Pfizer retains responsibility for corrective action.
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: Diane Schott