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Hazardous Waste Cleanup: Chemours Chambers Works in Deepwater, New Jersey

On this page:

  • Cleanup Status
  • Site Description
  • Contaminants at this Facility
  • Site Responsibility

Cleanup Status

The closures of three basins and two ditches were completed in the early 1990s. Two rounds of site-wide investigation have been completed. A number of interim measures - such as removal of source materials, installation of caps over contaminated areas, and fences -- have been completed to address immediate environmental concerns.

Interceptor Well System (IWS) was installed in the 1970s to pump and treat contaminated groundwater. The groundwater is pumped at a rate of 1.5 million gallons per day. The pumped groundwater is sent to an on-site wastewater treatment plant. Then, after meeting acceptable standards, it is pumped into the Delaware River. A site-wide groundwater monitoring program has been installed to monitor the effectiveness of the system. 

Currently, remedial actions are being implemented at the Salem Canal to address groundwater plume of VOC and SVOCs migrating into and beneath the Canal.  Investigation is being performed for the DANPL found under Delaware River near the AOC-1 area.  Vapor Intrusion investigation is being conducted at more than 200 buildings and structures at the site.  Also, an investigation is being performed to determine the extent of Perfluorooctanoic Acid (PFOA) contamination in the groundwater onsite and offsite. 

DuPont and the Army Corps will continue to look for additional sources that might be contaminating the site's soil and groundwater. New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection (NJDEP) will impose a deed notice on the site to restrict future use to industrial purposes. The pump and treat system will continue to operate in conjunction with a sheetpile barrier wall system, and the site-wide groundwater monitoring program to ensure that contaminated groundwater does not migrate off-site.

Site Description

The 1,455-acre DuPont Chambers Works Complex -- composed of the Chambers Works manufacturing area and the former Carneys Point Works - is located along the eastern shore of the Delaware River by State Highway 130 (Shell Road) in Deepwater, New Jersey. East of the Chambers Works Complex are light industrial, residential and recreational areas. North of the complex are residential areas, with the Delaware River to the west. 

The site began its industrial history in 1892 when the Carney Point smokeless gunpowder plant was constructed. Since then, operations have included the production of dyes, freon, tetraethyl lead, aromatic chemicals and elastomeric polymers. The site was used during World War II for research and development of chemicals for the production of radiological materials, which contributed to the development of the atomic bomb. By the early 1980s, the manufacture of explosives and dye ended, leaving only chemical manufacturing. Currently, there are several active waste-management areas on the site, including a secure landfill and a wastewater treatment plant.

A New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection (NJDEP) Resource Conservation and Recovery Act (RCRA) permit allows DuPont to operate the hazardous waste container storage areas, treatment units, a containment building, and a secure landfill. DuPont is also required under a RCRA permit to do site-wide groundwater monitoring. EPA HSWA permit and an agreement between NJDEP and DuPont require clean-up of the site. In addition, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers is evaluating the areas utilized for the radiological material research and development.

Contaminants at this Facility

Historical chemical manufacturing and waste management at the site have resulted in contamination of the site's groundwater and soils. Contaminants include organic and inorganic chemical constituents, polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs), and radiological materials. Chemicals that are heavier than water and therefore sink within the aquifer are also present.

Site Responsibility at this Facility

Resource Conservation and Recovery Act (RCRA) Corrective Action activities at this facility have been conducted under the direction of EPA Region 2.