NPL Site Narrative for Kerr-McGee Chemical Corp - Navassa
KERR-MCGEE CHEMICAL CORP - NAVASSA
Navassa, North Carolina
The Kerr-McGee Chem Corp site is located within the city limits of Navassa, North Carolina, along the banks of Sturgeon Creek. The property consists of 242 acres; however, the total area used in the manufacturing process was approximately 100 acres along Navassa Road and Sturgeon Creek. The site is currently unoccupied.
The Kerr-McGee Chem Corp site was operated as a wood treating facility from 1936 until 1974. Dried lumber was pressure treated with a creosote solution. The creosote was stored in above-ground tanks, and treated lumber was stored outside until dry. The wood treatment process generated wastewater which was treated onsite. A conjoined pair of unlined settling ponds was used to separate and reclaim creosote. The site was dismantled in 1980. Creosote in the settling ponds was reclaimed, but creosote sludge from the ponds and product storage tanks was mixed with soil and disposed of back into the wastewater ponds.
Site inspection activities have documented a dense non-aqueous phase liquid (DNAPL) below the wastewater ponds to a depth of 30 feet below ground surface. The DNAPL is near pure product creosote. In addition, extensive soil and ground water contamination exists on nearly 100 acres, including the production area. The wetlands sediments in adjacent Sturgeon Creek are also contaminated with creosote.
Potential Impacts on Surrounding Community/Environment:
Sturgeon Creek wetlands sediments are contaminated with creosote and creosote-related semi-volatile organic compounds, including polynuclear aromatic hydrocarbons. Sturgeon Creek is a fishery and creosote and creosote- related compounds are known to bioaccumulate in the food chain. Sturgeon Creek flows for approximately 0.5 miles before the confluence with the Brunswick River, and the Brunswick River joins with the Cape Fear River approximately 4 miles from the site. Sturgeon Creek, and the brackish Brunswick and Cape Fear estuaries, contain fisheries, extensive wetlands frontage and additional sensitive environments.
Response Activities (to date):
In 2006, EPA and Tronox LLC entered into an administrative settlement agreement and order on consent to conduct a remedial investigation and feasibility study at the site under the Superfund Alternative Approach (SAA). The initial phases of the remedial investigation have been completed. Tronox LLC is a successor to Kerr-McGee Chemical, LLC.
Need for NPL Listing:
The State of North Carolina referred the site to EPA because of widespread contamination on the property. Although Tronox LLC is currently performing the investigative work at the site, it has now filed for bankruptcy and may not be able to fund the needed cleanup. Other federal and state cleanup programs were evaluated, but are not viable at this time. EPA received a letter of support for placing this site on the NPL from the State.
[The description of the site (release) is based on information available at the time the site was evaluated with the HRS. The description may change as additional information is gathered on the sources and extent of contamination. See 56 FR 5600, February 11, 1991, or subsequent FR notices.]
For more information about the hazardous substances identified in this narrative summary, including general information regarding the effects of exposure to these substances on human health, please see the Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry (ATSDR) ToxFAQs. ATSDR ToxFAQs can be found on the Internet at ATSDR - ToxFAQs (http://www.atsdr.cdc.gov/toxfaqs/index.asp) or by telephone at 1-888-42-ATSDR or 1-888-422-8737.