SPRINGFIELD TWP. — The Environmental Protection Agency is still exploring options for the Tremont City Barrel Fill Site, which contains nearly 52,000 barrels of waste on 8.5 acres, officials said during a town hall meeting Wednesday, July 29.
The site contains industrial waste, including metals, pesticides and organic chemicals, said EPA project manager Ron Murawski.
At the town hall meeting, the agency outlined 11 possible options for how to best treat the area. Three of the alternatives involve containing the hazardous materials at the site, while eight calls for removing the barrels.
Currently, none of the liquid materials stored at the site have leaked into the aquifer, however, some of the liquids have migrated throughout the site.
“But what the future holds, we don’t know,” said Jeff Briner, chairman of the group Citizens for the Responsible Use of Water, which hosted the meeting at the Springfield Township Fire Hall.
His organization is in favor of an option that would remove all of the barrels from the site. One of those proposed plans for removal could cost $50 million, Briner said.
“We’re in favor of the option that would protect human life and the environment,” he said.
In the coming weeks the EPA’s National Remedy Review Board will begin review of the site and decide upon a course of action sometime in the next year. After the agency’s decision is announced, the proposal will go into a public review phase for a period of 30 to 60 days.
“It’s been seven years since we began this process,” Briner said. “We think it’s worth the wait.”
The fill site was operated from 1976 to 1979 by Industrial Waste Disposal Liquid Waste Inc. The EPA has cited businesses such as General Motors, Procter and Gamble and Delphi as parties suspected to be responsible for the site’s contamination.