EPA widens probe of water pollution around Delaware City Stauffer-Formosa site

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The Environmental Protection Agency will determine the extent of groundwater contamination at the Delaware City PVC Superfund site.

Under an administrative settlement with the EPA, Bayer CropScience L.P. will investigate groundwater contamination in the shallow aquifer east of the PVC plant property and evaluate potential contamination in the deeper aquifer, an EPA release stated.

These areas were not part of earlier remediation work at the site. Bayer CropScience is the successor to Stauffer Chemical Company, which performed the previous remediation effort.

The Superfund site, which was added in 1983 to EPA’s National Priorities List, consists of the propertywhere Stauffer operated a PVC manufacturing plant from about 1966 through 1981 and where Formosa Plastics Corporation continued manufacturing operations from about 1981 through now.

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The plant was built in 1966 by Stauffer. The company, according to the EPA, used lagoons and pits to dispose of PVC waste and sludge. Groundwater, which was used for drinking water and agricultural purposes, was heavily contaminated with solvent chemicals.

Stauffer conducted cleanup work beginning in 1982 to address certain groundwater contamination with a pump and treatment system that continues to operate

.This work addressed contamination in the top aquifer near the PVC manufacturing facility but did not check on contamination that was later discovered to the east of the plant or in the deeper aquifer.

The new investigationproposesalternatives to clean it up. Bayer is also required under the agreement to pay EPA’s oversight costs.

For more information on the Delaware City PVC site, visithttp://www.epa.gov/reg3hwmd/npl/DED980551667.htm

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