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U.S. EPA ANNOUNCES $17 MILLION SUPERFUND CLEANUP AGREEMENT

      U.S. EPA ANNOUNCES $17 MILLION SUPERFUND CLEANUP AGREEMENT
    SAN FRANCISCO, Nov. 19 /PRNewswire/ -- The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency today announced that an agreement has been reached for the cleanup of contaminated groundwater at North Indian Bend Wash, the northern portion of the Indian Bend Wash Superfund site in Scottsdale, Ariz.  The cleanup is expected to cost $17 million.
    Motorola Inc., Siemens Corp., SmithKline Beecham Corp. and Salt River Project, four parties identified by U.S. EPA as potentially liable for the contamination, have agreed to conduct the cleanup.  The city of Scottsdale also signed the agreement, as its participation is necessary for the success of the cleanup. The agreement in the form of a consent decree has been lodged with the U.S. District Court in Phoenix.  Public comment is now invited on the proposed settlement.
    "This settlement is representative of one of the fundamental principles of the Superfund program:  those responsible for contamination should bear the expense of cleaning it up," said Jeff Zelikson, director of U.S. EPA's regional hazardous waste management division.  "Reaching this agreement reflects EPA's commitment to protect the health and environment of the citizens in the vicinity of this federal Superfund site."
    The consent decree for the North Indian Bend Wash site brings the total value of negotiated Superfund cleanups in Region 9 to over $100 million this year.  Region 9 includes the states of Arizona, California, Hawaii and Nevada and the Pacific Islands under the jurisdiction of the United States.  Under these agreements, the responsible parties, who created or contributed to the environmental problems at Superfund sites, agree to fund and conduct the cleanup activities as determined by U.S. EPA.
    Groundwater at North Indian Bend Wash is contaminated with volatile organic compounds (VOCs), including trichloroethylene (TCE), which typically were used as solvents in industrial facilities and then disposed of on the ground.  Over time, the VOCs have seeped into the groundwater.  The North Indian Bend Wash is the area north of the Salt River, bordered by Pima, Scottsdale and Chaparral roads.
    Under the proposed Consent Decree, the city of Scottsdale will design, operate and maintain a treatment system to remove VOCs from groundwater.  Motorola, Siemens, SmithKline Beecham and Salt River Project will pay a portion of the design costs, construct the treatment system, continue extensive groundwater monitoring and reimburse Scottsdale for operations and maintenance costs.  Operation of the treatment facility will include sampling and analysis of the treated water to ensure it meets established treatment levels.  The companies are required to reimburse U.S. EPA, the Arizona Department of Environmental Quality and the Arizona Department of Water Resources which share oversight costs.
    The public now has 30 days to comment on the consent decree before the court takes final action.  Written comments should be submitted no later than Dec. 19, 1991, to:
               Assistant Attorney General
               Environment and Natural Resources Division
               U.S. Department of Justice
               10th St. and Pennsylvania Ave., NW
               Washington, D.C. 20044
                                 Reference case #90-11-2-413
    In addition to being available at the court, the consent decree is available, with other site-related documents, at the following local libraries:
         Tempe Public Library       Scottsdale Public Library
         3500 S. Rural Road         3839 Civic Center Plaza
         Tempe, Ariz. 85282         Scottsdale, Ariz. 85251
         Phoenix Public Library
         12 East McDowell Road
         Phoenix, Ariz. 85004
    On Sept. 12, 1991, the U.S. EPA also selected the remedial actions necessary to complete the cleanup of the North Indian Bend Wash site. Specifically, U.S. EPA selected a soil vapor extraction process to be used on contaminated soil.  The system includes activated carbon air emission controls to capture VOCs.  U.S. EPA also decided that some areas that have been investigated do not warrant cleanup action while other areas need further study.  The remedies are outlined in a document known as a Record of Decision that now also is available for public review at the Tempe, Scottsdale, and Phoenix Public Libraries.
    The Indian Bend Wash Superfund site, including NIBW, was placed on the federal National Priorities List, a list of the nation's most potentially hazardous waste sites, in 1983.
    NIBW was added to NPL after TCE, perchloroethylene and chloroform were found in several Scottsdale-area drinking water wells at concentrations above state action levels and federal drinking waterstandards in 1981.  As a result, local water providers stopped using those wells for drinking water.  Further monitoring revealed trichloroethane and dichlorethylene contamination as well.
    -0-                       11/19/91
    /CONTACT:  Paula Bruin of U.S. EPA, 415-744-1587/ CO:  U.S. Environmental Protection Agency ST:  California, Arizona IN: SU: DB -- SF007 -- 5176 11/19/91 18:39 EST
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Publication:PR Newswire
Date:Nov 19, 1991
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