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News Releases from Region 09

U.S. EPA seeks comment on Kettleman Hills proposed PCB permit

Public comment period will be open until Nov. 1, 2019

08/29/2019
Contact Information: 
Soledad Calvino (calvino.maria@epa.gov)
415-972-3512

KETTLEMAN CITY, Calif. – The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is opening a 60-day comment period for a proposed permit renewal and modification for the storage and disposal of polychlorinated biphenyl (PCB) waste at the Kettleman Hills hazardous waste facility, located along the I-5 corridor, 3.5 miles southwest of Kettleman City, Calif. 

EPA will hold a public meeting with a question-and-answer session followed by a public hearing on the proposed permit on Thursday, Oct. 10, 2019, at the Kettleman City Elementary School, located at 701 General Petroleum Ave. in Kettleman City. The meeting will be from 5:30 p.m. to 7:00 p.m., and the public hearing will start at 7:30 p.m.

EPA’s proposed permit would allow Chemical Waste Management Inc. (CWM), the owner and operator of the Kettleman Hills facility, to continue storing and disposing of PCB waste. If finalized, the proposal would allow use of the existing hazardous waste landfill approved by the California Department of Toxic Substances Control (DTSC) for additional PCB waste disposal. The proposed permit includes comprehensive operating, monitoring and reporting requirements to ensure that PCB waste operations will not pose an unreasonable risk to public health or the environment.

EPA has also prepared a Draft Environmental Justice Analysis to document that environmental justice concerns, including past outreach to seek the affected communities’ involvement, were considered in the drafting of the proposed permit. EPA is now seeking community input before reaching a final permit decision.

EPA will accept public comments on the proposed permit and supporting documents until Nov. 1, 2019. Comments may be submitted verbally or in writing at the public hearing. Comments can also be submitted online at www.regulations.gov (docket number EPA-R09-RCRA-2019-0088), or mailed or emailed to:

U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, Region 9
Land, Chemicals and Redevelopment Division, LND-4-2
75 Hawthorne Street
San Francisco, CA 94105
Attention: Frances Wicher
Telephone: (415) 972-3957
Email: r9landsubmit@epa.gov or wicher.frances@epa.gov

The draft permit and supporting documents are available for review at the Kettleman City Library in Kettleman City and online at https://www.epa.gov/ca/kettleman-hills. Information is also available in Spanish.

PCBs are toxic, manmade chemicals formerly used in electrical equipment. Congress banned the manufacture of PCBs in the U.S. in 1976 due to concerns over environmental and public health hazards. EPA has identified PCBs as probable human carcinogens, and they have been shown to cause other adverse health effects on the immune system, reproductive system, nervous system, and endocrine system.

For more information on the Kettleman Hills facility and the proposed permit, please visit: https://www.epa.gov/ca/kettleman-hills

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