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EPA Adds Southside Chattanooga Lead to the Superfund National Priorities List, Advances Agency’s Commitment to Expedite Cleanup Across the Country

09/11/2018
Contact Information: 
Jason McDonald (mcdonald.jason@epa.gov)
404-562-9203, 404-562-8400

ATLANTA (September 11, 2018) — Today, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) announced its commitment to clean up the Southside Chattanooga Lead in Chattanooga, Tennessee by adding it to the Superfund Program’s National Priorities List (NPL). Nationally, another four sites were added and six sites were proposed to the NPL. These additions represent commitments from the Agency to advance cleanup to protect communities across the country.

“In adding these sites to the NPL, EPA is carrying out one of our core responsibilities to the American people,” said EPA Acting Administrator Andrew Wheeler. “Cleaning up sites that pose risks to public health and the environment is a critical part of our mission and it provides significant health and economic benefits to communities across the country.”

“The addition of Southside Chattanooga Lead to the Superfund National Priorities List will ensure it is cleaned up for the benefit of the residents and communities in the affected areas,” said EPA Regional Administrator Trey Glenn. “These communities become healthier places to live and redevelopment is made possible.”

Southside Chattanooga Lead is composed of some residential properties, and other areas used by children, that have been impacted by lead-bearing foundry-related waste material. The impacted properties are located in the Alton Park, Cowart Place, Jefferson Heights, Richmond, and the Southside Gardens areas in the southwestern portion of Chattanooga, Hamilton County, Tennessee where foundry waste material was used in past decades as fill or top soil. Lead levels above health-based benchmarks has been detected in soils at some properties where foundry waste material has been located.

“We are pleased for the city and its residents that an avenue like the National Priorities List exists to clean up this site,” said Tennessee Department of Environment and Conservation Commissioner Dr. Shari Meghreblian. “This action will provide the funding and framework needed to get this hazardous material cleaned up and remove the threat to the public. It is absolutely the right thing to do.”

The priority for adding the Site to the NPL is to protect children by identifying and cleaning up lead-contaminated soil at residential properties and other areas where children may be present. Lead exposure also poses a public health threat to pregnant women.

The other four sites being added to the final NPL are as follows:

  • Broadway Street Corridor Groundwater Contamination in Anderson, Indiana;
  • Rockwell International Wheel & Trim in Grenada, Mississippi;
  • Donnelsville Contaminated Aquifer in Donnelsville, Ohio; and 
  • Delfasco Forge in Grand Prairie, Texas. 

The following sites are being proposed for addition to the NPL:

  • Copper Bluff Mine in Hoopa, California;
  • Cliff Drive Groundwater Contamination in Logansport, Indiana;
  • McLouth Steel Corp in Trenton, Michigan;
  • Sporlan Valve Plant #1 in Washington, Missouri;
  • Magna Metals in Cortlandt Manor, New York; and
  • Shaffer Equipment/Arbuckle Creek Area in Minden, West Virginia.

For the first time, EPA is listing sites on the NPL based on subsurface intrusion, or intrusion of contaminants into occupied spaces. With this recent addition to EPA's system for assessing sites, EPA examined the threat of subsurface intrusion to support listing the Rockwell Grenada Site and Delfasco Forge in Grand Prairie, Texas.

Under the Trump Administration, the Superfund program has reemerged as a priority to fulfill and strengthen EPA’s core mission of protecting human health and the environment. Since October 2017, EPA has deleted 10 full sites, and 2 partial sites from the NPL.

Background

The NPL includes the nation’s most serious uncontrolled or abandoned hazardous waste sites. The list serves as the basis for prioritizing EPA Superfund cleanup funding and enforcement actions. Only sites on the NPL are eligible to receive federal funding for long-term, permanent cleanup.

EPA initiates Superfund involvement at sites when states, tribes, or communities ask for the agency’s help, or when the agency finds contamination during its own investigations. Sites are deleted from the NPL once the agency completes all response actions and achieves all cleanup objectives. The Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation, and Liability Act (CERCLA), which established the Superfund program, requires EPA to update the NPL annually.

The Superfund program has been providing important health benefits to communities across the country for more than 35 years.

Superfund cleanups also strengthen local economies. Data collected through 2017 shows that at 487 Superfund sites in reuse, approximately 6,600 businesses are generating $43.6 billion in sales and employ 156,000 people who earned a combined income of $11.2 billion.

The NPL is one focus area of the 2017 Superfund Task Force Recommendations to improve and revitalize the Superfund program. On July 23, 2018, EPA released the Superfund Task Force 2018 Recommendations Update. 

The 2018 Recommendation Update can be found here:

https://www.epa.gov/superfund/superfund-task-force-recommendations-2018-update 

The Superfund Task Force Recommendations can be viewed at: https://www.epa.gov/superfund/superfund-task-force-recommendations

For Federal Register notices and supporting documents for the final and proposed sites: http://www.epa.gov/superfund/current-npl-updates-new-proposed-npl-sites-and-new-npl-sites

For information about Superfund and the NPL:

http://www.epa.gov/superfund

Link to EPA FacebookLink to EPA Southeast Region Twitter feed

2018 Superfund Task Force notice