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Hazardous Waste Cleanup: United States Bronze Foundry & Machine Incorporated in Meadville, Pennsylvania

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Cleanup Status

EPA issued its Statement of Basis for the Facility on August 18, 2015. The proposed remedy consisted of continued compliance with the restrictions and requirements contained in the environmental covenant and its associated Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection (PADEP)-approved Post Remediation Care Plan in order to control human and environmental exposure to hazardous constituents in Facility soils. Since no comments were received during the 30-day public comment period which ended September 18, 2015, EPA issued its Final Decision on September 23, 2015. The Final Decision was unchanged from the remedy proposed in the Statement of Basis. 

 Cleanup Background

United States Bronze Foundry and Machine, Inc. (USBFMI) has been the owner/operator of the Facility since 1988.  A contractor for Pneumo Abex LLC (former Facility owner) submitted a Site Characterization Report (SCR) in 2006. The SCR focused on the following five areas: South Parking Lot, Fuel Tank Area, Facility-Wide Groundwater, Metals Impacted Soils and Sediments (MISS) and the Slag Reclamation Basin/Bank (SRB) Area. 

A Final Report was submitted for the Fuel Tank Area in September 2009. This Area is located on the northeastern portion of the Facility where four (4) decommissioned 20,000-gallon aboveground fuel oil storage tanks (ASTs) that were used from 1947 through 1984 are located.  Based on soil sampling results no additional work is required at the Fuel Tank Area.

A Final Report was submitted for the South Parking Lot area in October 2009.  From 1959 through 1969, spent foundry sands containing elevated levels of metals, primarily lead, and limited quantities of other fill materials generated from facility operations were placed in the South Parking Lot Area to bring that area to grade.  In Fall 2008, an asphalt cover system was placed over the existing parking lot and a geocomposite cover system was placed on the western slope of this Area. The covers, along with institutional controls designed to maintain the engineered components and limit future site activities in this Area, effectively eliminate potential future exposure pathways.

A Cleanup Plan for the MISS/SRB areas was submitted in January 2011.  The SRB is comprised of a former wastewater management basin and its adjacent bank located in the north central portion of the Facility. The SRB was used to manage solids from the reclamation process. At the time of the SCR, the SRB had been filled to grade with sludge, debris, and soils containing elevated concentrations of metals, primarily lead.  Waste materials including dried sludge and foundry sand were also present in the adjacent bank and on adjacent residential property. Approximately 4,500 cubic yards of waste materials were deposited in the SRB. The MISS Area includes the remainder of the Facility property. Most of the surface and subsurface soil samples collected from the MISS Area did not exhibit elevated constituent concentrations. However, metals, primarily lead, were detected at elevated levels at a 2-acre area adjacent to the SRB Area, at a 0.5-acre area in the Equipment Storage Area north of the foundry building, at a 0.1-acre area north of the entrance road, in sediments in a portion of the unnamed tributary adjacent to the SRB Area, and in drainage features adjacent to stormwater outfalls.  The Cleanup Plan, approved by both EPA and PADEP, proposed excavating and relocating contaminated soils from the MISS Area to the SRB Area and then capping the SRB Area.

A Site Cleanup Final Report was submitted in October 2013. The site was remediated in Fall 2012 in accordance with the approved Cleanup Plan. 

The contractor for Pneumo Abex executed an environmental covenant on behalf of USBFMI in August 2014. The covenant contained institutional controls that designated usage of the site for non-residential use only, instituted inspection and maintenance requirements for the cover systems at the Facility, spelled out measures to prevent disturbance of the cover systems, and prohibited groundwater usage for potable purposes within the cover boundaries.

USBFMI received its “yes” determinations for the Current Human Exposures Under Control and Migration of Groundwater Under Control Environmental Indicators on August 3, 2010. 

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Site Description

Interactive map of U.S. Bronze Foundry & Machine Incorporated, Meadville, PA

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The Facility is located on approximately 40 acres in the southwest corner of Woodcock Township in Crawford County, approximately 2.5 miles north of Meadville, Pennsylvania. USBFMI is bordered on the north and south by residential areas, on the west by French Creek and on the east by Conrail tracks and U.S. Route 19.

The Facility has been operated since 1947 by several companies including Pneumo Aberx Corporation (ABEX), ABC Rail Corporation, and USBFMI for the production of non-ferrous brass and bronze castings.  USBFMI currently owns the Facility. Prior to USBFMI's ownership, solid waste was disposed in an on-site landfill, liquid wastes were reclaimed in lagoons and basins, and foundry sands were used as fill material in the south parking lot and placed on the ground surface in various areas. USBFMI currently operates the Facility as a foundry and machine shop producing non-ferrous castings, and semi-finished and finished machined products. 

In the early 1960s, ABEX used a 3.1-acre portion of the Facility southwest of the main building and South Parking Area as a landfill (Landfill) for the storage and disposal of various types of high metals content wastes. The Landfill, which contains approximately 31,600 cubic yards of waste, was closed in 1985 under an approved Resource Conservation and Recovery Act (RCRA) closure permit.  ABEX also treated industrial waste in two clay-lined wastewater treatment lagoons located west of the North Parking Area (Lagoons). The Lagoons were also closed in the mid-1980’s under an approved RCRA closure permit.  The remainder of the areas of concern at the site were discussed in the Status section above.

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Contaminants at this Facility

Metals, primarily lead, were historically seen in soils throughout the Facility property. All of the soils containing elevated metals concentrations have been excavated and placed in various locations at the Facility beneath engineered covers, effectively eliminating the direct exposure pathway. Dissolved phase metals in groundwater have consistently been below PADEP’s non-residential medium specific concentrations (MSCs). The environmental covenant will add an extra layer of protection by prohibiting the use of groundwater beneath cover systems on site for potable purposes.

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Institutional and Engineering Controls at this Facility

Institutional /Engineering Control Summary
Restrictions or Controls that Address: Yes No
Groundwater Use
X
 
Residential Use
X
 
Excavation
 
X
Vapor Intrusion
 
X
Capped Area(s)
X
 
Other Engineering Controls
 
X
Other Restrictions
 
X

The contractor for Pneumo Abex executed an environmental covenant on behalf of USBFMI in August 2014. The covenant contained institutional controls that designated usage of the site for non-residential use only, instituted inspection and maintenance requirements for the cover systems at the Facility, spelled out measures to prevent disturbance of the cover systems, and prohibited groundwater usage for potable purposes within the cover boundaries.

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Land Reuse Information at this Facility

The facility is under continued use.

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Site Responsibility at this Facility

RCRA Corrective Action activities at this facility have been conducted under the direction of EPA Region 3.

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