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EPA Proposes Adding McLouth Steel Site in Trenton, Mich. to the Superfund National Priorities List

09/11/2018
Contact Information: 
Rachel Bassler (bassler.rachel@epa.gov)
312-886-7159

For Immediate Release: No. 18-OPA052

CHICAGO (Sept. 11, 2018) — Today, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency proposed the southern portion of the McLouth Steel site in Trenton, Mich. to the Superfund program’s National Priorities List (NPL). This proposed addition represents the agency’s commitment to advance Superfund cleanups 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.”

“EPA is strongly committed to working with states and local communities to identify, clean up and return Superfund sites to productive reuse,” said EPA Regional Administrator Cathy Stepp. “Enabling responsible redevelopment of sites can transform underutilized sites that have long been considered eyesores or wastelands to become engines of revitalization.”

The McLouth Steel site has been split into two sections: the north and south. The southern portion is proposed to the NPL, with contamination stemming from the facility’s steel-making process, acid pickling line and wastewater treatment plant.  

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

For more information out the McLouth Steel site: https://www.epa.gov/superfund/mclouth-steel

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