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Frontier Fertilizer
Davis, California

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Site Description

The Frontier Fertilizer site, approximately 19 acres in size, was first developed in the 1950s as an area to store agricultural equipment. The Barber and Rowland Company operated a pesticide and fertilizer distribution facility on the parcel from 1972 to 1982, and the Frontier Fertilizer Company continued operations from 1982 to 1987. Chemical-related operations consisted of storing, mixing, and loading pesticides and fertilizers into mobile tanks for farm application. It appears, based on the quantity of pesticides found, that waste chemicals, mainly pesticides and fertilizer tank or container rinsate, were discharged into one or more disposal basins. The site contains contaminated soil and a groundwater plume that extends in a northerly direction under residential housing. The nearest residence is approximately 600 feet north of the property boundary.

This site has a high level of community involvement, and the technical assistance grant participants have been actively engaged with EPA since 1995. EPA continues to hold regular public meetings to keep the community informed about the progress of design and cleanup work. After EPA finalized the Record of Decision (ROD), the Agency conducted close to 40 community interviews as part of its effort to revise the community involvement plan.

Current Site Status and Cleanup Actions to Date

  • In 1983, soil samples from the disposal basin area were collected after an employee's dog died of pesticide poisoning. Pesticide handling was discontinued after this time. During 1985, the property owner excavated 1,100 cubic yards of soil from the disposal basin area.
  • During 1992-1993, the State of California conducted groundwater investigations and installed a ground water pump and treat system.
  • In 1994, EPA's emergency response program excavated contaminated soil to a depth of 10 feet below ground.
  • In 1996, EPA made improvements to the pump and treat system that increased ground water treatment to 50 gallons per minute.
  • The ROD, signed in 2006, calls for actions that include: use of electrical energy to heat the contaminants to a less toxic state; continued running of the ground water pump and treat system; restricting site access; and capping contaminated soil areas until the property is developed in the future.

Current Funding Status

  • In Fiscal Year 2007, EPA obligated approximately $6.0 million for the in-situ heating remedy

For more information on this site, please read the Frontier Fertilizer Fact Sheet on the Region 9 Superfund web site.

Key Accomplishments

  • In 1985, the property owner excavated 1,100 cubic yards of soil from the site.

  • The State of California installed a ground water pump and treat system during 1992-1993.

  • EPA's emergency response program excavated contaminated soil to a depth of 10 feet below ground in 1994.

  • EPA awarded a technical assistance grant to the community affected by the site in 1995.


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