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U.S. EPA Releases Proposed Cleanup Plan for Casmalia Resources Superfund Site in Santa Barbara County

Public Meeting to be held December 6, 2017, 6-8 p.m. at the Orcutt Academy Charter (formerly Winifred Wollam Elementary School)

12/04/2017
Contact Information: 
Soledad Calvino (calvino.maria@epa.gov)
415-972-3512

SAN FRANCISCO – Today, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is proposing a comprehensive cleanup plan to address contaminated soil and groundwater at the Casmalia Resources Superfund Site in Santa Barbara County, Calif. The former hazardous waste treatment, storage, and disposal facility closed in 1989. The site was listed on the National Priorities List in 2001 after years of operational problems, releases of waste materials, abandonment by the original operator, and concerns raised by local communities.

EPA's recommended cleanup plan includes: contaminated hotspot removal, engineered capping systems, groundwater collection and treatment systems, natural breakdown of groundwater contaminants at some locations, long-term surface water management, source reduction, land use controls, and ongoing monitoring and maintenance to ensure onsite containment. Construction of the proposed cleanup plan is estimated to take five years and cost approximately $60 million. Annual operations and maintenance costs are estimated at $4.1 million per year.

EPA welcomes public comments on the plan from Wednesday, November 22, 2017, to Monday, January 22, 2018.  EPA will host a public meeting to discuss the proposed plan from 6 to 8 p.m. on Wednesday, December 6, 2017, at Orcutt Academy Charter School (formerly Winifred Wollam Elementary School), at 3491 Point Sal Road in Casmalia, Calif.  Spanish interpretation services will be provided.

Written comments may be mailed or emailed to:

Alejandro Diaz, Community Involvement Coordinator
75 Hawthorne St., SFD 6-3, San Francisco, CA 94105
415-972-3242
diaz.alejandro@epa.gov

Although EPA has proposed a Preferred Alternative cleanup plan, the final remedy for the site has not been selected. All comments received will be considered and addressed in writing in the Record of Decision when a final remedy is selected for the site.

“Our proposed plan is based on the most effective cleanup technologies available,” said Alexis Strauss, EPA’s Acting Regional Administrator for the Pacific Southwest. “We encourage everyone to review the plan and provide comments so we can reach the best decision to protect public health and the environment.”

EPA has prepared the proposed plan in consultation with the California Department of Toxic Substances Control, the Central Coast Regional Water Quality Control Board, and community stakeholders. EPA has also consulted with the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and the California Department of Fish and Wildlife for protection of special status wildlife species, including the California red-legged frog and the California tiger salamander.

The Casmalia Resources Superfund Site is a 252-acre former commercial hazardous waste management facility, which accepted about 5.6 billion pounds of wastes from over 10,000 generators between 1973 and 1989. The waste management operations included landfills, surface impoundments, evaporation pads, waste spreading areas, injection wells, and burial trenches. These disposal operations contaminated soil, air, surface water and groundwater on the property with many different types of mixed hazardous chemicals. Although the site has been stabilized and there are no immediate risks to the public, cleanup work, monitoring and ongoing maintenance of the site will provide long-term community protection.

In 1997, EPA reached a settlement with the Casmalia Steering Committee (CSC), a group of 54 companies that sent large volumes of waste to the site. The CSC will work on the final remedy based on an agreement with EPA. The work will be funded from financial settlements with many entities that sent waste to the site. The CSC has since been conducting site investigations, maintenance, and interim response work under EPA oversight.

To view the proposed cleanup plan and for more information about the Casmalia Resources Superfund Site, please visit: https://www.epa.gov/superfund/casmalia

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