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Hazardous Waste Cleanup: Huntington Ingalls Incorporated in Newport News, Virginia

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Cleanup Status

This facility is one of EPA Region III's high priority Resource Conservation and Recovery Act (RCRA) corrective action sites. The Facility constructs and repairs military and commercial ships and has been operating in shipbuilding production since 1888.  On July 13, 2001, a RCRA Corrective Action Permit was issued to the facility to investigate Solid Waste Management Units (SWMUs) identified during the Environmental Indicator (EI) inspection and previous investigations/assessments of the facility. Huntington Ingalls has been investigating those SWMUs that were identified and listed in the permit under EPA’s direction.

Virginia DEQ re-issued the RCRA Corrective Action Permit in 2010, and updated it in 2011 due to the name change to Huntington Ingalls Incorporated (HHI).   Pursuant to the RCRA Corrective action program, HHI performed multiple RCRA Corrective action activities at the Facility.  Investigations occurred from 2003 to 2018 in accordance with and EPA approved RFI Workplan and additional work plans specific to each SWMU as needed.  Based on the results of the release assessment and groundwater monitoring, the Facility continues to monitor groundwater and natural attenuation of contaminants. Since groundwater is not used for any purpose at the Facility, no unacceptable risks to human health and the environment are identified provided certain engineering and institutional controls remain in place.

The corrective action remedy decision was implemented through the Facility’s Post Closure Care and Corrective Action Permit issued on April 23, 2019. The Permit requires the Facility to continue the post-closure care and groundwater monitoring program for SWMU 12a, continue groundwater monitoring to monitor natural attenuation for hazardous constituents, and maintain certain property mechanisms known as Institutional Controls (ICs) and Engineering Controls (ECs).

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Site Description

Interactive Map of Huntington Ingalls Incorporated, Newport News, VA

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The shipyard is located on the southwest edge of the City of Newport News, Virginia, and has been operating since 1888. The facility encompasses approximately 0.75 square miles, and is bounded on the north and west by the James River; on the east by Washington, Huntington, and West Avenues; and on the south by 31st Street.

The facility constructs and repairs military and commercial ships. The facility is currently owned by Northrop Grumman; however, a name change was made in April 2011 to Huntington Ingalls.

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Contaminants at this Facility

The contaminants of primary concern at the site are VOC (naphthalene) and two SVOC’s (pentachlorophenol and naphthalene).

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Institutional and Engineering Controls at this Facility

Institutional Controls (ICs) and Engineering Controls (ECs) at the Facility were implemented in accordance with the Final Remedy Implementation requirements described in the Facility's Permit. ICs and ECs include:

  1. The property shall not be used for residential purposes or for children’s (under the age of 16) daycare facilities, schools, or playground purposes and senior care facilities.
  2. Groundwater beneath the property shall not be used for any purpose except for environmental monitoring and testing, or for non-contact industrial use as may be approved by DEQ. DEQ must approve any new groundwater wells installed at the facility area.
  3. Maintain and prohibit disturbance of the engineered cover over SWMU 12a.
  4. Excavation and disturbance within areas known to have contaminants left in place on the property shall be conducted in accordance with the Facility’s excavation permitting process as detailed in the CMI Plan required by the Permit.
  5. Maintain the existing security fencing along the perimeter of the property.
  6. Future modifications at the property that could be reasonably understood to adversely affect or interfere with the integrity or protectiveness of the final remedy will be evaluated by the Facility in coordination with DEQ to identify and address those potential impacts or interferences.

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Land Reuse Information at this Facility

The facility is under continued use.

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Site Responsibility at this Facility

RCRA Corrective Action activities at this facility are being conducted under the direction of the Virginia Department of Environmental Quality with assistance from EPA Region 3 .

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