News Releases from Region 05
PCBs removed from Crown Vantage Side Channel as part of EPA’s Kalamazoo River Superfund cleanup
CHICAGO (April 28, 2021) – U.S. Environmental Protection Agency today announced that the removal of PCB-contaminated sediment from the Crown Vantage Side Channel in the Kalamazoo River system is now complete. The potentially responsible parties, Georgia Pacific LLC and the International Paper Co., conducted the cleanup under EPA’s supervision.
“Cleaning up this channel is another important milestone in EPA’s ongoing effort to restore the Kalamazoo River system and the areas near the Superfund site after decades of pollution from papermill operations,” said acting EPA Region 5 Administrator Cheryl Newton. “The agency is committed to cleaning up the Kalamazoo River so it can thrive again and provide residents and visitors with more opportunities for recreation.”
The channel is a backwater located between the Crown Vantage Landfill and the river. More than 11,000 cubic yards of contaminated sediments were removed from the channel and shipped to commercial landfills for disposal. The cleanup involved upgrading access roads near the landfill, staging areas for equipment and drying the sediment before disposal off-site.
Polychlorinated Biphenyls or PCBs are a group of man-made organic chemicals that are known as chlorinated hydrocarbons. PCBs were domestically manufactured from 1929 until they were banned in 1979. PCBs do not readily break down in the environment and can bioaccumulate.
The work was part of the larger cleanup of a section of the Kalamazoo River known as Area 1. For more information visit: https://www.epa.gov/superfund/allied-paper-kalamazoo.