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Congressional District # 07


EPA ID# OH7571724312
Last Updated: June, 2015

Site Description

Wright-Patterson Air Force Base (WPAFB) is located in southwestern Ohio between the cities of Fairborn and Dayton.  Wright Field consists of 2,300 acres and three old runways, and it houses primarily research facilities.  Patterson Field is 4,900 acres in size and contains the active runway complex, warehouses, offices, industrial facilities, and flight line support.  A Consent Order between the Air Force and the Ohio Environmental Protection Agency (OEPA) was signed in 1988, and a Federal Facilities Agreement between the Air Force and the United States Environmental Protection Agency (U.S. EPA) was signed in 1991.  WPAFB overlies the Mad River Buried Valley Aquifer, which is a sole-source aquifer providing drinking water for approximately 500,000 people.  The Installation Restoration Program at WPAFB began in 1981, and consists of 65 sites or source areas (including thirteen landfills, twelve earth fill disposal zones, nine fuel or chemical spill sites, six coal storage piles, five fire-training areas, four chemical burial sites, two underground storage tanks, and miscellaneous other sites).   Wright-Patterson AFB is also listed on the National Priorities List (NPL) as a Superfund site.

Site Responsibility

This site is being addressed through federal action. The Air Force has lead responsibility for this site, with regulatory support from EPA and Ohio EPA. 

Threats and Contaminants

Primary contaminants of concern are chlorinated volatile organic compounds and benzene compounds in soils and groundwater.

Cleanup Progress

The 65 individual source areas have been grouped into eleven source control and one basewide groundwater cleanup project.  In 1995, U.S. EPA, the Air Force, and OEPA signed a consensus statement for streamlining the investigation and study process at WPAFB.  Under this statement, areas of the base needing action are addressed as early actions (i.e., removal actions) with the Air Force as the lead agency, and sites not needing action are separated out as early as possible for no action decisions.  There have been several past removal actions including drum and tank removals, free product recovery systems, and groundwater treatment by air stripping for trichloroethene. 

In 1993 and 1994, two Records of Decisions (RODs) were signed consisting of landfill capping, leachate collection and treatment, gas collection and treatment, public water supply, and institutional controls (1993); and a no action decision for some off-source areas (1994).  The 1993 ROD cleanup action is complete.  In 1996, a ROD selecting no action was signed for 21 sub-areas within the source control cleanup projects.  In 1997, a ROD for natural attenuation of a fuel spill area in Operable Unit 2 (OU2) was signed.  Under the streamlining process, two early actions are complete (landfill caps in 1996 and 1997). 

Under the streamlining process, an excavation of a chemical disposal site, three landfill cover projects, and one french drain system were completed in 1998.  A ROD for "No Further Action (NFA),"other than monitoring and institutional controls, controlling all of the source control areas was signed in September 1998.  A final ROD for the Groundwater OU was signed in September 1999, which documented that all remedial actions selected in RODs had been completed.  A Preliminary Construction Closeout Report (PCOR) was completed in September 1999. The PCOR stated that the Air Force will continue Operation and Maintenance (O&M), and monitoring, in accordance with the applicable RODs.  

The first Five-Year Review of the protectiveness of the remedy was completed in March 2000. This Five-Year Review required implementation measures for soil at Spill Sites 2,3 and 10 within OU2; groundwater downgradient from Landfills 8 and 10 within the Off-Source Operable Unit; and continuation of long term monitoring (LTM) of the groundwater at the Source Control Operable Unit.  A concurrence memo for WPAFB's second Five-Year Review report was signed by the Superfund Division Director on December 9, 2005.  This was the first Five-Year Review for the Groundwater Operable Unit (GWOU), and the second Five-Year Review for the remaining Installation Restoration Program (IRP) sites at WPAFB. 

The third Five-Year Review for the WPAFB was completed in 2010.  Again, the result of the Five-Year Review was the determination that all remedies at WPAFB are protective of human health and the environment in the short term.  Continued enforcement of institutional controls through a Land Use Control Plan is required in order to maintain protectiveness in the future.  The next Five-Year Review is planned to be completed by the end of 2015.

Community Involvement

A Community Relations Plan (CRP) was prepared in February 1986 and revised in 1989, 1993 and 1997.  Updates are added periodically to the CRP in an effort to keep the public informed about the current and upcoming activities planned at WPAFB.  Regular meetings of a base Environmental Advisory Board are also held quarterly in Fairborn, Ohio.

Congressional Interest


Property Reuse

The WPAFB site continues to operate as an active Air Force military installation.  There are no plans for this use to change.


Remedial Project Manager, U.S. EPA
david seely (seely.david@epa.gov)
(312) 886-7058





Site Profile Information

This profile provides you with information on EPA's cleanup progress at this Superfund site.


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