EPA Announces Plans to Use Funds from Bipartisan Infrastructure Bill to Expedite Cleanup at Arrowhead Plating Superfund Site
PHILADELPHIA (Dec. 17, 2021) – The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) announced a $1 billion investment from the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law today to initiate cleanup and clear the backlog of 49 previously unfunded Superfund sites and accelerate cleanup at dozens of other sites across the country. Until this historic investment, many of these were part of a backlog of hazardous waste sites awaiting funding.
“No community deserves to have contamination near where they live, work, pray and go to school,” said EPA Mid-Atlantic Regional Administrator Adam Ortiz. “The historic funding boost from the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law invests $3.5 billion in the Superfund Remedial Program, making a dramatic impact in EPA’s ability to address the legacy pollution that harms the public health of communities and neighborhoods across the country.”
Approximately $8.3 million in initial infrastructure funding will be used at the Arrowhead Plating site in Montross, Virginia, for electrical resistivity heating to treat potential Dense Non-Aqueous Phase Liquid (DNAPL) and high concentrations of Volatile Organic Compounds (VOCs) in groundwater beneath the former manufacturing building located on the Site.
“I am thrilled to see the dispersal of this first wave of funding to clean up superfund sites across the country,” said U.S. Congressman Donald McEachin (VA-04). “Too often, tribal and indigenous communities, low-income communities, and minority communities are disproportionately impacted by environmental injustices and sources of legacy pollution like superfund sites. I was proud to support the Bipartisan Infrastructure Deal because it will take concrete steps to address these issues. The release of these funds is a monumental first step in combatting environmental injustice and ensuring a healthier future for all Americans, regardless of their zip code or socioeconomic status.”
The Arrowhead Associates/Scovill Corp. Site is located approximately two miles southeast of Montross, Virginia, in Virginia’s Northern Neck region. The Site, previously used for cosmetic case manufacturing from 1966 to 1979, occupies approximately 30 acres on the east side of State Route 3. It includes a manufacturing building, parking lot and five former sludge settling ponds and a treated wastewater pond on the eastern portion. Site soils and groundwater were contaminated via on-site residual process wastes, contaminated containers, and manufacturing equipment. EPA added the Site to the Superfund program’s National Priorities List in 1990.
The $1 billion investment is the first wave of funding from the $3.5 billion in the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law to help cleanup polluted Superfund sites in communities. The backlog of previously unfunded sites that will now be receiving funding are in 24 states and territories and all 10 EPA regions, including some communities who have been waiting for cleanup for more than four years.
EPA is committed to carrying out this work in line with President Biden’s Justice40 Initiative by advancing environmental justice and incorporating equity considerations into all aspects of the Superfund cleanup process. This will help ensure that historic and ongoing impacts of contamination on overburdened communities are fully considered and addressed.
EPA Administrator Michael S. Regan visited the Lower Darby Creek Area site in Pennsylvania, one of the many sites with ongoing work that will receive a boost from the historic Bipartisan Infrastructure Law funding. Along with new construction projects, infrastructure funds will be used to accelerate ongoing work and begin cleanup at additional Superfund sites in various stages of pre-construction and planning throughout the country.
The funds will supercharge the Superfund program to address the toll contaminated sites have on communities. EPA is finalizing cleanup plans and preparing funding mechanisms to get construction work started as soon as possible. More information about funding for backlogged sites and accelerated cleanup sites will be available in the coming weeks.
In 1980, the Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation and Liability Act, known as Superfund, was passed. The novel law gave EPA the authority and funds to hold polluters accountable for cleaning up the most contaminated sites across the country. When no viable responsible party is found or cannot afford the cleanup, funds appropriated by Congress are used. A tax on chemical and petroleum industries provided funds to the Superfund Trust fund for Superfund cleanups up until 1995. The Bipartisan Infrastructure Law reinstates the chemical excise taxes and invests an additional $3.5 billion in environmental remediation at Superfund sites, making it one of the largest investments in American history to address the legacy pollution that harms the public health of communities and neighborhoods.
The Bipartisan Infrastructure Law is a once-in-a-generation investment that will create millions of jobs modernizing our infrastructure, turn the climate crisis into an opportunity, and put us on a path to win the economic competition for the 21st century.
For more information and to see a list of the 49 sites to receive funding for new cleanup projects, please visit: https://www.epa.gov/superfund/superfund-sites-new-construction-projects-receive-bipartisan-infrastructure-law-funding