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Release Date: 6/30/1999
Contact Information: Paula Bruin, U.S. EPA, (415) 744-1587

     SAN FRANCISCO--The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency will hold a public meeting Wednesday, July 14, 1999,  to discuss a proposed legal agreement to clean up trichlorethylene (TCE) contaminated soil and groundwater at the Tucson International Airport Area Superfund site, Pima County, Ariz.  The proposed agreement or consent decree was reached by EPA, General Dynamics Corp., Mcdonnell Corp., the Tucson Airport Authority (TAA), the city of Tucson and the U.S. Air Force.

       Under the proposed consent decree, the Air Force will contribute $35 million and the other parties will contribute additional funding or management assistance until EPA determines that the cleanup is complete.  The Air Force's financial contribution under the agreement does not effect its responsibilities to pay for the environmental cleanups at the Air National Guard base and Air Force Plant 44, the Raytheon facility.

     "This agreement is part of a comprehensive settlement that ensures that the progress we have made at this Superfund site continues to move forward until all contaminated areas at the site are fully cleaned up," said Keith Takata, EPA's western region Superfund Director.  "We will not only clean up the airport property, but will also ensure the continued funding and cleanup activities for the Tucson airport water treatment plant."

      Previous EPA cleanup actions at this site have resulted in the construction of four groundwater treatment systems which have cleaned up more than 40 billion gallons of contaminated groundwater.  In combination with aggressive soil cleanup, these actions have removed over 60 tons of solvents from the environment.

     The community meeting will be held from 6 to 9 p.m. in Building One of the El Pueblo Neighborhood Center, 101 W. Irvington Rd., Tucson, Ariz.  This meeting follows a presentation EPA made to the Unified Community Advisory Board (UCAB) on June 16th to discuss the cleanup and the terms of the agreement.  The UCAB provides oversight and input to EPA on the TCE cleanup.

     Community members are also encouraged to comment on the proposed consent decree between June 23, 1999 and July 23, 1999.  Comments may be submitted verbally or in writing during the public meeting or written comments may be sent no later than July 23rd to:

Lois Schiffer
Assistant Attorney General
Environment and Natural Resources Division
U.S. Department of Justice
Washington, DC 20530

Reference: U.S. v Tucson Airport authority - DOJ reference # 90-11-3-369/2

     Community members interested in reviewing a copy of the proposed consent decree can visit the TCE Superfund Library located in building 3A in the El Pueblo Center.  TCE Superfund Library hours are from 8 a.m. to 12 noon, Monday through Friday.  Copies of the proposed consent decree may be obtained by calling the TCE Library at (520) 889-9194 or email to  A request for a copy of the document from the TCE Superfund Library can be mailed to Atten: Gayle Willer, Librarian, 101 W. Irvington Rd., Tucson, AZ 85714.

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