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EPA begins review of cleanup at Saco Tannery Superfund site

Contact Information: 
Emily Bender (

Boston – The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) plans to conduct a comprehensive review of the Saco Tannery Waste Pits Superfund site in Saco, Maine by performing a required Five-Year Review.

"It is a priority for EPA to make progress cleaning up Superfund sites across the region," said EPA New England Acting Regional Administrator Deb Szaro. "Saco Tannery is a great example of a site that EPA keeps tabs on to make sure the completed cleanup is still protective."

The Saco Tannery site cleanup was completed in 1993, and the site was removed from the National Priorities List in 1999. The last Five-Year Review was conducted in 2014, and the remedy was found to be protective of human health and the environment.

The Superfund program, a federal program established by Congress in 1980, investigates and cleans up the most complex, uncontrolled or abandoned hazardous waste sites in the country and endeavors to facilitate activities to return them to productive use.

Under the Trump Administration, the Superfund program has reemerged as a priority to fulfill EPA's core mission of protecting human health and the environment.

EPA is actively involved in Superfund studies and cleanups at 16 sites across Maine including three Federal Facilities. There are many phases of the Superfund cleanup process including considering future use and redevelopment at sites and conducting post cleanup monitoring of sites. EPA must ensure remedies are protective of public health and the environment and any redevelopment will not compromise the protectiveness of completed remedies.

For more information on the Saco Tannery Waste Pits Site, please visit:

Superfund Task Force. In May 2017 EPA established a task force to restore the Superfund program to its rightful place at the center of the Agency's core mission to protect health and the environment.