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Release Date: 7/24/1996
Contact Information: Lois Grunwald, U.S. EPA, 415) 744-1588

     (San Francisco) -- The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (U.S.EPA) today announced that it will hold a public meeting August 1 to discuss a proposed plan for the cleanup of groundwater at the Fresno Sanitary Landfill Superfund site.

     The meeting will be held from 7 to 9 p.m. at WestPark Elementary School, 2695 South Valentine Ave., Fresno.

     "U.S. EPA believes this plan best minimizes any harmful exposure to contaminants from the landfill," said Keith Takata, U.S. EPA's regional Superfund director. "U.S. EPA is committed to protecting the health and environment of residents near the Fresno Landfill."

     The plan calls for containing the contaminated groundwater beneath the landfill and installing wells along the perimeter of the landfill to pump and treat the water to national drinking water standards. The groundwater that is removed and treated will be used as irrigation water or disposed of in Fresno's wastewater treatment system.

     In 1993, U.S. EPA approved a plan for the city of Fresno to design and build a landfill cap and gas control system to prevent further contamination of groundwater, soil and ambient air. The cap will prevent rain water from moving through the landfill waste, which will reduce groundwater contamination. Fresno is scheduled to complete the designs for this plan by late 1997, with  construction to begin shortly afterward.

     The Fresno Sanitary Landfill, located four miles southwest of the city of Fresno, contains a number of volatile organic compounds (VOCs). The landfill is about 145 acres in size and rises about 60 feet above the surrounding land. It is bounded on the north by Jensen Avenue, on the east by West Avenue, on the south by North Avenue, and on the west by agricultural fields. The area surrounding the landfill is primarily agricultural.

    The Fresno Sanitary Landfill is owned and was operated by the city of Fresno. The unlined landfill began operating in 1937; the landfill stopped accepting trash in 1989.

     U.S. EPA added the Fresno Sanitary Landfill Superfund site to the National Priorities List (NPL) in November 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.

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