EPA Announces Superfund Site in Marion County, Ohio Selected to Receive Bipartisan Infrastructure Law Funds
Initial resources will also accelerate cleanup for dozens of additional Superfund projects
WASHINGTON (Dec. 17, 2021) – Today, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) announced a $1 billion investment from the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law 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. Thousands of contaminated sites exist nationally due to hazardous waste being dumped, left out in the open, or otherwise improperly managed. These sites include manufacturing facilities, processing plants, landfills and mining sites.
“For more than 100 years, the upper Midwest was the nation’s industrial center. But when factories and mills closed they left behind a legacy of toxic sites that are challenging to clean up,” said EPA Regional Administrator Debra Shore. “The bipartisan infrastructure law will fund stalled cleanups at seven Superfund sites in Michigan, Ohio, Wisconsin, and Indiana and accelerate our efforts to restore and revitalize communities here in the Midwest.”
The Little Scioto River Superfund site in Marion County, Ohio was selected to receive funding under the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law. Infrastructure funds will be used to remove approximately 129,500 cubic yards of PAH-contaminated sediment along an 8.5 mile stretch of the river. The state, local community, and local government officials have been waiting for the selected cleanup to be implemented for five years. This action will result in a clean sediment layer, which will then allow for a healthy lower food web community to thrive in the river. Once the cleanup goals for the river are achieved, the Ohio Department of Public Health will be in a position to lift the public health advisory against swimming in, wading in, and eating any fish/mussels in the river which has been in effect for almost 20 years.
The $1 billion investment is the first wave of funding from the $3.5 billion in the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law to help clean up 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.
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
For more information about EPA’s Superfund program, please visit: https://www.epa.gov/superfund