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Release Date: 3/28/1995
Contact Information: Paula Bruin, U.S. EPA, (415) 744-1587

    (San Francisco)--The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency
(U.S. EPA) today announced a plan for cleaning up groundwater
contamination in the Muscoy plume of the Newmark Superfund site,
San Bernardino, Calif.

     "This action will significantly contribute to the
achievement of U.S. EPA's ultimate objective in this project:
protection of the health and environment of the citizens who live
in the vicinity of this Superfund site," said Jeff Zelikson, U.S.
EPA's regional hazardous waste management division director.
"This decision was made after careful consideration of all the
alternatives and a thorough review of the public's comments."

     The plan calls for extracting the contaminated groundwater
from the underground water supply southwest of the Shandin Hills
and treating it to remove the solvents.  The contaminants,
perchloroethylene (PCE) and trichloreothylene (TCE), will be
removed by either of two proven treatment technologies--carbon
filtration or air stripping.

     After treatment, the water will meet all legal requirements
for drinking water and will be piped to the public water supply
system for distribution.  As a contingency, if local water
agencies are unable to accept the treated water, the water will
be treated to meet state reinjections standards and be returned
into the aquifer.

     The Newmark Superfund site includes two plumes of
contaminated groundwater.  The project originally addressed only
the plume east of the Shandin Hills.  However, further
investigation traced the source of the contamination through a
previously undiscovered underground channel flowing from the
western or Muscoy side of the valley.

     Testing by the state of California in the 1980s showed
unacceptable concentrations of PCE and TCE in a number of wells
in North San Bernardino.  The city and Cal/EPA built four water
supply treatment plants.  San Bernardino's public water supply is
routinely tested to determine if state and federal drinking water
standards are met.

     The Newmark Superfund site was placed on the National
Priorities List in 1989.  The NPL is U.S. EPA's list of hazardous
waste sites potentially posing the greatest long-term threat to
public health and the environment.  U.S. EPA identifies and ranks
NPL sites according to threats to nearby populations through
actual or potential contamination of groundwater, surface water
or air.

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