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Village of Middleport
Posted by: BillA on Oct 22, 2020 - 10:41 PM
At of the completion of activities in the Air Deposition Area this year (2020), the NYSDEC will turn the effort over to FMC for future property remediation with DEC approvals and over-site. Under the new Consent Order, FMC must agree to DEC terms and requirements although negotiations during planning stages will continue. FMC will present remedies to the DEC but the latter can override them and select their own. FMC will then have to follow through with remediation per the DEC ruling.
In 2021, FMC has plans to be prepared to remediate any of the properties left in the Air Deposition Area whose owners have refused remediation in the past. There are 26 of these properties. There is one of these properties with a new owner who has asked their property be remediated. There is also one property bordering the area who has requested remediation because of marginally elevated contamination. FMC will continue to ask owners who have refused if they have changed their minds as well as ask new owners of unremediated properties.
It should be noted that aside from the two properties to be remediated in the Air Deposition Area mentioned above, there have not been approvals to proceed from property owners in other areas which will be required. FMC has created preliminary plans on what they expect they can do in the future as outlined below but actual construction cannot begin without approvals. If approvals are not obtained for some, schedules for other activities could be moved up. The DEC must also approve FMC's plans and modifications are possible. In some cases there may be discussions between FMC and the DEC concerning the best way to proceed which may change plans.
The Norco property will be addressed in 2021 if access can be obtained. The buildings could be demolished and remediation of soil would begin. Mayor Westcott stated there is a party interested in the property once cleared and cleaned to use for light industrial activity.
Culvert 105 from the north side of the canal to the north side of the Maedl apartment complex not already remediated is scheduled for 2021. North of that could be done in 2022. The remedial design is currently under way.
A portion of the farm land east of the village and west of the county line might be started in 2021, with most planed for later years if approval given. Excavation may be done in high contamination areas with the tilling/blending method possible in lower contaminated areas. It should be noted that at this time only a small portion of that farm property is identified for remediation. Also the field east of Middleport, north of Route 31E and west of the county line is currently in design phase with construction targeted for 2022.
The DEC has published their Preliminary Statement of Basis (PSOB) for Operational Unite 3 (OU3) which are the areas east of the Niagara/Orleans County line between routes 31 and 31E, farm fields north of the canal between Middleport and the county line and the north and south side canal banks. Sampling has been done in those areas and the DEC has proposed a remedy that will reduce the level of arsenic below 20 PPM for unrestricted use. FMC had proposed either no action or cleanup to a restricted use of agricultural/industrial/commercial use. These lands consist of farm fields currently used as such, heavily wooded areas, and canal banks including the tow path. There are no roads into these areas that would lend themselves to future residential development. The DEC is currently seeking comments to their Statement of Basis until November 16, 2020. Although the DEC is seeking comment now and will make their decision on the remedy next year, FMC's plans are not to begin design and construction until 2026,
The tributary creek south of Pearson road is in the design stage with planed construction beginning in 2023 and going out to 2029. FMC is negotiating with the DEC to select a remedy that does not destroy the wet areas and natural wild habitat in the non residential areas. The effort north of Pearson Road is planed for 2029 and beyond with negotiations and design in the preceding years.
The R&D area south of the FMC plant on Route 31, is currently being used by the DEC as a staging site for their remediation efforts. They also have some office space there. Once FMC can gain access, a study will begin with remediation planed for 2026 and 27.
On another topic, FMC is expanding some production lines as business continues to improve at the plant. Construction of new buildings to house offices and labs is still a couple of years out.
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All meetings run from 5:30 to 8:00 p.m. at the Masonic Lodge, 20 Main St. in the Village. All Middleport residents and property owners are welcome to stop by anytime while we are meeting.
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