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Case Summary: Settlement Agreements Reached with Goodrich Corp. and KTI, Inc. Regarding Cleanup at B. F. Goodrich Superfund Site, Rialto, Calif.

On March 26, 2013, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and the Department of Justice (DOJ) announced that two settlements were filed with the U.S. District Court for the Central District of California. These settlements require the Goodrich Corporation to investigate and clean up contaminated soil and ground water at the Rockets, Fireworks, and Flares (RFF) (formerly B.F. Goodrich) Superfund Site in Rialto, Calif. At the same time, EPA and DOJ also filed a settlement agreement with KTI, Incorporated regarding cleanup at the site.

These settlements, along with previously filed settlement agreements in 2012, will result in a comprehensive cleanup of the site totaling as much as $100 million.

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Information about the Goodrich Corporation

In 2012, UTC Aerospace Systems was formed by combining two industry leaders, Hamilton Sundstrand and Goodrich Company, creating an organization that is one of the world’s largest suppliers of technologically advanced aerospace and defense products. UTC Aerospace Systems employs approximately 40,000 employees on six continents: North America, South America, Asia, Africa, Europe and Australia. While UTC Aerospace Systems is a global company, its largest facilities are located in Windsor Locks, Conn.; Rockford, Ill.; and Chula Vista, Calif.

Information about the Rockets, Fireworks, and Flares (formerly B.F. Goodrich) Superfund Site

The Rockets, Fireworks, and Flares (RFF) Superfund Site, formerly named the B F. Goodrich Superfund Site, is located in a mixed residential, commercial, and industrial area in the city of Rialto, Calif. From about 1957 to 1962, Goodrich Corporation conducted research, development, testing, and production of solid-fuel rocket propellant in Rialto that led to the contamination of soil and ground water at the site.

The site encompasses a source area of soil and groundwater contamination known as the “160-Acre Area,” which is part of a larger area acquired by the U.S. Army in 1942 to develop an inspection, consolidation, and storage facility for rail cars transporting ordnance to the Port of Los Angeles. Since 1946, a portion of the property has been used by defense contractors, fireworks manufacturers, and other businesses.

Additional information is able from the Agency’s Rockets, Fireworks, and Flares (RFF) Superfund Site Web page.

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Pollutants and Environmental Effects

The area’s ground water is contaminated with trichloroethylene (TCE) and perchlorate, which have impacted public drinking water supply wells in the cities of Rialto and Colton. TCE is an industrial cleaning solvent. Drinking or breathing high levels may cause damage to the nervous system, liver and lungs. Perchlorate is an ingredient in many flares and fireworks, and in rocket propellant, and may disrupt the thyroid’s ability to produce hormones needed for normal growth and development.

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Information about the Settlement Agreements

Goodrich Corporation Settlements

The first settlement, a judicial consent decree, requires Goodrich Corporation ("Goodrich"), under EPA’s oversight, to design, build, and operate, under EPA’s oversight, the cleanup remedy to address soil and ground water contamination in central and south Rialto. EPA expects to develop a detailed cleanup plan for these areas, which is expected to be available for public comment in 2015. The Department of Defense (DoD) is also a settling party and will pay a portion of the cleanup costs. Goodrich will pay at least the first $21 million of the cost of the cleanup work. Goodrich is responsible, with contributions from DoD and proceeds from other settlements, for ensuring the completion of the cleanup work. The Goodrich consent decree also includes a settlement with the cities of Rialto and Colton and the county of San Bernardino. The cities sued Goodrich in 2004 and 2005. The U.S., on behalf of EPA, joined the litigation in 2010 to require cleanup and recover federal money spent at the site. The second settlement, an administrative consent order, requires Goodrich to install additional groundwater monitoring wells and complete testing (sampling??) and engineering analyses needed to assist EPA with the development of a cleanup plan. The monitoring well installation and testing is expected to begin this summer and continue into 2014.

KTI, Incorporated Settlement

Under the consent decree, KTI, Incorporated will pay $2.8 million to EPA for costs related to cleanup at the site. KTI will also allow EPA, and other parties performing work on the Agency’s behalf, access to the site for any cleanup work.

Earlier Settlement Agreements

In 2012, settlement agreements were filed with the court addressing cleanup of the B.F. Goodrich Superfund Site.

  • Under a December 4, 2012 settlement agreement, Emhart, DoD, and the other settling defendants, agreed to spend $43 million over the next 30 years to cleanup contaminated groundwater at the site. Pursuant to the settlement, the cities of Rialto, Colton, and the county of San Bernardino will receive $8 million.
  • Under a October 10, 2012 settlement agreement, Pyro Spectaculars Inc (PSI) and the other settling defendants, agree to pay $4.3 million to the EPA and $1.3 million to the cities of Rialto and Colton and San Bernardino County.

More information on the above settlements is available on the Agency’s “Settlements Reached at B. F. Goodrich Superfund Site with Pyro Spectacular Industries and Emhart Industries” Web page.

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Contact Information

Michele Benson
Assistant Regional Counsel
U.S. Environmental Protection Agency
Region 9
75 Hawthorne Street
San Francisco, CA 94105

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