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Hazardous Waste Cleanup: Miller Springs Remediation Management - Glenn Springs Holdings (Formerly: Occidental Chemicals) in Belle, West Virginia

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    Cleanup Status

    In September 1992, Occidental Chemical Company (OxyChem) and the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) entered into an Administrative Order on Consent to conduct a Resource Conservation and Recovery Act (RCRA) Facility Investigation (RFI) and a Corrective Measures Study (CMS) and to perform Interim Measures (IMs), as necessary, at the Facility. The RFI was implemented in two phases: The purpose of Phase I, which was completed in July 1998, was to evaluate whether soil and groundwater quality was impacted by the solid waste management units located on facility property. Phase I field work included extensive surface, subsurface soil and groundwater sampling, aquifer testing, geophysical studies and collection of sediment and surface water samples. The results of Phase I work indicated that there are two broad source areas, the Production Area and Area 7. The Phase II RFI was designed to expand on the Phase I RFI work by further investigating soil and groundwater quality associated with these sources. In addition, Phase II evaluated the potential ecological impact from releases at the site, and included other data collection activities, such as additional surface soil analysis, necessary for the completion of the RFI. Phase II work was initiated in the spring of 1999 and completed by the summer of 2000. The potential human health and ecological risks posed by the site were evaluated for various exposure scenarios. This evaluation was completed in 2003, and EPA approved the Final RFI in February 2004. EPA also approved the Human Health Indicator in 2004.

    The property is now managed by Glenn Springs Holdings, Inc. (Glenn Springs). Due to the site's complexity, EPA and Glenn Springs decided the best path forward for the facility would be to implement interim measure cleanups, prior to selecting a final remedy.  One of these interim measures was a sheet pile wall, keyed into bedrock, located near the confluence of Reynolds branch and the Kanawha River surrounding Area 7. Glenn Springs installed the wall in the Fall of 2005. Because groundwater data indicated that the sheet-pile wall was not completely impermeable, Glenn Springs installed a system of TreeWells® to maintain hydraulic control within the wall and a geosynthetic cap to restrict infiltration.

    In making the Final Remedy decision EPA determined that it is technically impracticable (TI) to attain EPA Groundwater Protection Standards throughout the groundwater plume because free product (DNAPL) at the Facility and adjacent property is unrecoverable due to the hydrogeologic characteristics of the subsurface, the location of the DNAPL, and the extent of the DNAPL.  The establishment of a TI Zone represents the best balance of the criteria that EPA considers when selecting a remedy.  In addition, ongoing natural attenuation will continue to degrade source area COCs thereby containing the plume onsite.  Because contaminants remain in the soil and groundwater at the Facility and adjacent property above levels appropriate for residential use, the Final Remedy for Oxychem requires land and groundwater use restrictions to restrict activities that may result in exposure to those contaminants.  In addition, the Final Remedy includes the previously installed sheet pile wall and TreeWells and maintenance of the vegetative cover across the Facility.  The Final Remedy is implemented through an Administrative Order On Consent signed September 26, 2013.

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    Site Description

    Interactive Map of Miller Springs Remediation Management – Glenn Springs Holdings, Belle, West Virginia

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    The former OxyChem facility is located in Belle, West Virginia, approximately 15 miles southeast of Charleston, West Virginia, on a 23-acre site adjacent to the Kanawha River. The Belle Facility is located in a mixed industrial/residential area, which includes the DuPont Belle plant located immediately adjacent to the site's northern property boundary. Chemical production operations began at the site in 1920 by Belle Alkali Company and continued through a succession of owners and tenants until OxyChem purchased the facility in 1986. OxyChem manufactured multi-product chloromethanes from chlorine until the plant shutdown in October 1994. All process equipment and buildings have been taken down and removed from the site.

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    Contaminants at this Facility

    Volatile organic compounds are the main constituents found in the site's soil and groundwater. These compounds primarily consist of methylene chloride, chloroform, and carbon tetrachloride. Semi-volatile organic compounds and metals were also detected.

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    Institutional and Engineering Controls at this Facility

    Institutional Controls and Engineering Controls:

    • Restrict land use to non-residental purposes
    • Restrict excavation, earth moving, drilling and construction so it doesn't interfere with the Soil Management Plan for the site
    • Maintenance of a geosynthetic cap, vegetative cover, barrier wall and tree wells at Area 7
    • Restrict Groundwater to non-potable use and groundwater monitoring

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    Land Reuse Information at this Facility

    The facility is presently unused.

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    Site Responsibility at this Facility

    RCRA Corrective Action activities at this facility have been conducted under the direction of EPA Region 3 with assistance from the WVDEP.

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