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Tulalip Landfill No Longer A Superfund SIte

Release Date: 9/19/2002
Contact Information: Loren McPhillips
(206) 553-4903

September 19, 2002

Cleanup Involved Times, P.I.

Concluding the final chapter of a once contentious cleanup, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency today announced that the Tulalip Landfill has been removed from the EPA’s National Priorities (a.k.a. Superfund) List and is no longer a Superfund site.

After the successful construction of a cover system over the old landfill, the EPA and the Tulalip Tribes have determined that the site no longer poses a significant threat to public health or the environment and, therefore, no further cleanup actions are necessary. The construction and cleanup at the site was completed in October 2000. A current photo of the site is below.

photo of landfill area EPA placed the landfill on EPA’s National Priorities (Superfund) List in 1995 due to concerns that aluminum, arsenic, cadmium, manganese and other contaminants at the landfill were leaking into surrounding wetlands and sloughs leading to the Snohomish River.

Under a lease from the Tulalip Tribes, the Seattle Disposal Company operated the 147-acre landfill from 1964 until 1979 when three to four million tons of mixed commercial and industrial waste was deposited in the landfill. The contaminants were discovered after the landfill was closed and originally capped with soil.

Waste Management of Washington, one of the responsible parties, stepped forwarded during settlement negotiations and offered to construct a 147 acre cover system over the landfill. Cleanup work included regrading 500,000 cubic yards of soil and waste, importing one million cubic yards of soil, sand, and topsoil, and installing over 21 million square feet of liners and capping materials. The work is estimated to have cost $34 million.

EPA’s Regional Administrator, L. John Iani said, “This is a classic example of how the private sector, tribes and EPA can work together effectively to reach a common goal. Given the contentious legal history on this site and the difficulty of settlement negotiations, it’s exciting to see the cleanup completed and the site removed from the Superfund list.”

John McCoy, the Tulalip Tribes’s Director of Governmental Affairs said, “The Tulalip Tribe is delighted that the Superfund landfill site has been fully remediated and de-listed. This work to contain the hazardous materials here marks a significant milestone in the history of the Tribe. We are pleased that the United States Environmental Protection Agency led the way to accomplish this important project.”


Bill Dunbar
Office of External Affairs
EPA Region 10