An official website of the United States government.

We've made some changes to EPA.gov. If the information you are looking for is not here, you may be able to find it on the EPA Web Archive or the January 19, 2017 Web Snapshot.

News Releases

News Releases from Region 02

Cleanup Proposed for Hercules, Inc. Superfund site in Gibbstown, N.J.

07/27/2018
Contact Information: 
Elias Rodriguez (rodriguez.elias@epa.gov)
212-637-3664

(New York, N.Y.) Today, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) proposed a cleanup plan for the Hercules, Inc. Superfund site in Gibbstown, N.J. Previous chemical manufacturing operations at the site contaminated the soil, sediment, and groundwater with volatile organic compounds. EPA is proposing a combination of excavation and treatment to address this contamination.

“EPA is proposing several cleanup technologies that we believe will address the contaminated soil, sediment, and groundwater at this site and protect the health of this community,” said EPA Regional Administrator Pete Lopez. “Under EPA’s oversight, the site has been assessed and has resulted in the treatment of two billion gallons of contaminated groundwater. This work is at the very core of EPA’s mission, and we are dedicated to continuing our significant progress in addressing contamination at this site.”

EPA is proposing to excavate and treat the top four feet of contaminated soil using naturally-occurring microorganisms to destroy or break down the contaminants and treat in-place soil located deeper than four feet using chemicals to spur naturally-occurring microorganisms to destroy or break down the contaminants. EPA is also proposing to excavate and dispose of lead-contaminated soil and excavate and treat contaminated sediment from Clonmell Creek as well as an on-site storm water basin. The proposed plan also calls for reuse of treated soil and sediment on the site as soil cover, and continued extracting and treating of contaminated groundwater.

Background

The Hercules, Inc. site, also known as the Gibbstown plant, is located on approximately 350 acres in Gloucester County. The site encompasses an 80-acre former process area and a 4-acre area known as the solid waste disposal area. A hydroperoxide/dicumyl peroxide manufacturing facility formerly operated in the plant process area. Waste materials from manufacturing processes, including waste resulting from the production of aniline, were disposed of in two unlined disposal pits. Operations at the plant ceased, and the structures associated with manufacturing were demolished, in 2010. Under the direction of the State of New Jersey, the party responsible for the site conducted cleanup activities that included consolidation of tar pits and contaminated soil under a cap to reduce exposure, restrictions on the access and use of groundwater, and long-term monitoring of the site. A groundwater extraction and treatment system was installed in the plant process area as an interim cleanup to protect local municipal drinking water wells. The system is still operating and, to date, more than two billion gallons of contaminated groundwater have been extracted and treated. The current proposed plan represents EPA’s final remedy required for the site.

EPA will hold a public meeting on August 16, 2018 to explain the proposed cleanup plan and other options considered and to take public comments. The meeting will be held at 7:00 p.m. at the Municipal Court meeting room, 2nd floor, 21 N. Walnut Street, Gibbstown, N.J. Comments will be accepted until August 28, 2018.

Written comments may be mailed or emailed to: Patricia Simmons Pierre, Remedial Project Manager; U.S. E P A; 290 Broadway, 20th Floor, N.Y., N.Y., 10007 or e-mail: pierre.patricia@epa.gov  

To read EPA’s proposed plan, visit: www.epa.gov/superfund/hercules-gibbstown

On the one-year anniversary of the EPA’s Superfund Task Force Report, EPA announced significant progress in carrying out the report’s recommendations. These achievements will provide certainty to communities, state partners, and developers that the nation’s most hazardous sites will be cleaned up as quickly and safely as possible.

EPA’s new “Superfund Task Force Recommendations 2018 Update” is available at: https://www.epa.gov/superfund/superfund-task-force-recommendations-2018-update

Follow EPA Region 2 on Twitter at http://twitter.com/eparegion2 and visit our Facebook page, http://facebook.com/eparegion2.

18-055

Superfund Task Force. In May 2017 EPA established a task force to restore the Superfund program to its rightful place at the center of the Agency's core mission to protect health and the environment. epa.gov/superfund/superfund-task-force.