Contact Us


All News Releases By Date


EPA Okays Design For Safe Contaminant of Dioxin-Contaminated Material at Diamond Alkali Superfund Site in Newark, New Jersey

Release Date: 08/04/1998
Contact Information:

(#98097) NEW YORK, N.Y. -- The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) today approved the design plans for the safe containment of dioxin-contaminated material on the Diamond Alkali federal Superfund site at 80 and 120 Lister Avenue in the Ironbound Section of Newark, New Jersey. The material includes contaminated soil on the properties and soil and debris collected in the adjacent neighborhood streets during a major Superfund removal action in 1983, which is currently secured on the site in 932 cargo containers. From 1951 to 1969 the Diamond Alkali Company owned and operated a pesticides manufacturing plant at 80 Lister Avenue, Newark, New Jersey. Dioxin, an extremely toxic chemical, was found on the property at 80 Lister Avenue and at surrounding properties in 1983.

The potentially responsible parties (Occidental Chemical Corporation and Chemical Land Holdings, Inc.) completed the design of an interim on-site containment remedy, under the terms of a 1990 Consent Decree with EPA and NJDEP. It includes: (1) a slurry wall and flood wall around the properties; (2) installation of a cap over the properties; and (3) installation of a groundwater extraction and treatment system to control the movement of contaminated groundwater.

Prior to approving the interim remedy design, EPA explored the possibility of utilizing more permanent solutions; namely on-site and off-site incineration. EPA concluded that neither option could be carried out in the short-term. As a result, EPA has given its approval to the potentially responsible parties' plans for the construction of the interim containment system.

"We are taking this interim step now because this action will be more protective in safeguarding public health ," EPA Regional Administrator Jeanne M. Fox stated. "Our go ahead comes with the understanding between EPA and the responsible parties, as embodied in the 1990 Consent Decree, that this decision will be reevaluated for a permanent remedy every two years after the containment system is built."

EPA will continue to look for a practical solution that will provide a more permanent and protective remedy at the site and has the acceptance of the community. Subject to the terms of the Consent Decree, EPA will then require utilization of that cleanup action. Past Site Activities To address the off-site contamination in 1983, EPA and the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection (NJDEP) initiated a number of clean-up activities including: vacuuming contaminated streets; excavating contaminated soil; fencing the site; 24-hour guard service; and storing the vacuumed/excavated material (10, 495 cubic yards) in 932 cargo containers on the 120 Lister Avenue portion of the site. In addition, the ground surface at the site was covered with a geotextile material and debris piles were covered with geosynthetic liners. This prevents direct contact with the contaminated soil, surface erosion of contaminated soil into the river, and migration of contaminated dust.

For more information contact:
Richard Cahill, Press Office
EPA Region 2
290 Broadway
NY, NY 10007-1866
Voice: 212-637-3666 FAX: 212-637-5046 E-Mail: