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Enforcement

Case Summary: BFPP Settlement Addresses Cleanup and Continued Operations at the Jorgensen Forge Property in Washington State

On November 11, 2016, the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), the Department of Justice (DOJ), and Star Forge, LLC (Star Forge) entered into a Bona Fide Prospective Purchaser Settlement Agreement (BFPP Settlement) to address cleanup work at the Jorgensen Forge Property located within the Lower Duwamish Waterway Superfund Site in Washington State.

Without the BFPP Settlement, bankrupt Jorgensen Forge Corporation (Jorgensen) would have ceased operations and liquidated its assets. Instead, the BFPP Settlement allows Star Forge to continue operations and complete the cleanup, which will protect human health and the environment. Under the settlement Star Forge also set aside $500,000, which will be made available to potentially responsible parties (PRPs) who enter into a settlement with EPA to undertake cleanup actions elsewhere at the Lower Duwamish Site. This agreement preserves 111 metal working jobs and helps the local economy.

Under the BFPP Settlement, Star Forge agreed to take over plant operations from Jorgensen and contribute to the $1.9 million in necessary environmental cleanup on the property. This cleanup will be performed with Boeing, who is a potentially responsible party at the Site. The $500,000 set aside will provide an important inducement for PRPs to enter into cleanup settlements at the Lower Duwamish Site. In return, the United States provided Star Forge with a covenant not to sue under the authority of the Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation, and Liability Act (CERCLA, commonly referred to as Superfund).

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Information about Star Forge, LLC

Star Forge is a subsidiary of CE Star Holding, LLC (CE Star). CE Star is a holding company for three operating businesses that manufacture highly engineered, specialty metal products serving a diverse range of niche industrial end markets.

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Information about the Jorgensen Forge Property

The Jorgensen Forge Property is located at 8531 East Marginal Way South, in Seattle, Washington. The Site is adjacent to the Boeing Plant 2 facility and is within the boundaries of the Lower Duwamish Waterway Superfund Site. The Jorgensen Forge Property is one of several contamination investigations and cleanups taking place in the waterway.

The Jorgensen Forge Property has housed steel-related industrial operations since the 1940s. Previous investigations at the Site found high concentrations of PCBs, total petroleum hydrocarbons (TPH), arsenic, cadmium, chromium, lead and nickel in soils, and TPH and metals in the groundwater. EPA has already taken some early cleanup actions at the Site, include the removal of PCB-contaminated sediments and river bank dirt in 2014. 

More information is available from the Lower Duwamish Waterway Site profile page.

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Background on the Jorgensen Forge Corporation Bankruptcy

In May 2016, Constellation Enterprises, LLC and its subsidiary, Jorgensen, filed a Chapter 11 bankruptcy petition in Delaware. In August 2016, the Bankruptcy Court approved the sale of Jorgensen and its property to CE Star and its subsidiary, Star Forge (Purchasers). The court order approving the sale allowed the Purchasers to void the sale if the Purchasers did not resolve environmental matters related to the Jorgensen Forge Property to their satisfaction, which was accomplished through the BFPP Settlement. 

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Overview of the BFPP Settlement Agreement

The BFPP Settlement allowed Star Forge to purchase the Jorgensen Forge Property, maintain operations, and conduct cleanup while being protected from Superfund liability, so long as Star Forge complies with the BFPP Settlement. Without this agreement, cleanup at the Jorgensen Forge Property would probably have been delayed, the property could have been abandoned, and operations would have probably ceased, leading to job losses. 

The BFPP Settlement, filed with the United States Bankruptcy court for the District of Delaware, was subject to a 7-day public comment period and was subsequently approval by the federal court.

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Contact Information

For more information, contact

Joe Wallace
Project Manager, Jorgenson Forge Property
U.S. Environmental Protection Agency
Region 10
206-553-4470
wallace.joe@epa.gov

Julie Congdon
Community Involvement Coordinator
U.S. Environmental Protection Agency
Region 10
206-553-2752
congdon.julie@epa.gov

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