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Issues related to the RCRA process
Following is a new release from the DEC regarding their plans for 2016.

The New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) announced today that Phase two of the soil remediation effort will begin on June 27 on the grounds of the Royalton-Hartland (Roy-Hart)High School and on May 3 at residences located on the K and M Blocks in the Village of Middleport, Niagara County. This remediation is part of the overall 14.4-acre remediation effort required under the Final Statement of Basis (FSB) issued by DEC in May 2013 regarding the cleanup of the FMC Corporation Middleport facility site.

The 2013 FSB requires the removal of arsenic contamination exceeding the 20 part per million soil cleanup objective from the Roy-Hart High School property. To date, approximately 8,000 cubic yards of material has been excavated from the school property by DEC due to FMC's refusal to implement the remedy. During phase two, DEC will excavate and remove approximately 900 cubic yards of arsenic-contaminated soil from the Roy-Hart High School inner courtyards and grass areas adjacent to the southwestern side of the high school during the summer of 2016.

DEC is currently working with the Royalton-Hartland Board of Education and school district officials to develop a construction schedule for all remaining soil remediation activities at the school.
Remedial work will also restart this month to complete the excavation and removal of arsenic-contaminated soil from three residential properties within the K and M Block areas as well as the remaining 28 residential properties within the K and M Block areas that have signed on to the project.
DEC and partnering contractors have worked closely with the Village Mayor and public works staff to coordinate this work on the K and M blocks. The DEC project team has also engaged in extensive outreach with residential property owners in this area and will continue these activities until the project is complete.

The FSB identifies a total of 182 properties in the Village of Middleport for cleanup and DEC will continue its cleanup activities until all impacted properties have been addressed, as required by the FSB. Any property owners within the K and M Blocks who have not already responded to DEC to schedule remediation of their properties are encouraged to contact Dave Chiusano at 518-402-9813 or David.Chiusano@dec.ny.gov.

For comments from Bill Arnold, MCIG Chairman, click Read Full Aricle link below.
The term "required" in the DEC news release is a bit of an overstatement. The school and residents in the M and K blocks, or for that matter any of the 182 properties under DEC consideration, are NOT required to remediate and the owners have the right to refuse. There is justification to refuse. As stated by the DEC in their response summary to public comments published in May, 2013, there is no peer reviewed studies that support arsenic in soil is hazardous to human health.

The DEC base their belief that soil containing arsenic above 20 PPM should be remediated on studies performed mostly in third world countries where arsenic was in drinking water or in water used to irrigate rice patties. These conditions do not exist in Middleport or on the school grounds.

I was assured by a DEC managing engineer that "arm twisting" of residents would not be used but to say remediation is required under that Final Statement of Basis is pushing it.

FMC has not agreed to the cleanup goal of all soil above 20 PPM be remediated but would have begun remediation three years ago if the goal of an average 20 PPM with a maximum of 40 PPM was used. FMC believes this goal would be just as protective and it fell within EPA guidelines when the Final Statement of Basis was issued. As for the school, they don't have much of a choice to refuse. It was suggested by the State Education Department if the school board did not agree to the DEC plans, their state funding might be in jeopardy. That seems to exceed arm twisting.

Bill Arnold
DEC Announces activities for Summer 2016 | Log-in or register a new user account | 0 Comments
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