News Releases from Region 03
EPA Finalizes Removal of Superfund Designation from First Piedmont Superfund Site in Pittsylvania County, Virginia
PHILADELPHIA (Oct. 16, 2020) -- The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has finalized the deletion of the 4.7-acre First Piedmont Rock Quarry Site located on Route 719 in Pittsylvania County, Virginia, from the Superfund National Priorities List (NPL).
This action is one of 27 sites across the country in which EPA is removing all or a portion of a site from the NPL. This marks the third year in a row that EPA has deleted a historically high number of Superfund sites, sending a clear message that human health and the environment are being protected.
“Deletion from the NPL is an important milestone because it signals to potential developers and financial institutions that cleanup is complete and the site no longer pose a risk to human health and the environment,” said EPA Regional Administrator Cosmo Servidio. “This paves the way for investment in the redevelopment of formerly contaminated properties and returning these properties back to the community as assets.”
EPA and the Virginia Department of Environmental Quality (VADEQ) have determined that all appropriate response actions under the Superfund program have been completed, and no human and environmental health concerns remain, so the Site may be removed from the NPL.
“Virginia Department of Environmental Quality (DEQ) values the ongoing, excellent working relationship with EPA Region 3 at Superfund sites throughout the Commonwealth,” said Virginia DEQ Director David K. Paylor. “Over the years, our partnership with EPA has shown consistent commitment to protecting human health and the environment, improving communities and facilitating economic redevelopment opportunities.”
The 4.7-acre First Piedmont Corporation Rock Quarry Site includes two parcels located in Pittsylvania County, Virginia. One 2-acre parcel includes the former rock quarry. Between 1970 and 1972, the First Piedmont Corporation leased the on-site rock quarry and used it as an industrial landfill. The business disposed of 65,000 cubic yards of waste material, including 15,000 gallons of liquid waste, in the quarry.
The Virginia State Health Department ordered the landfill to close following a fire in 1972. The site was added to the Superfund program’s National Priorities List (NPL) on July 21, 1987.
The site’s long-term remedy included excavation and off-site disposal of non-landfill-related wastes; off-site disposal of drums and surface debris; installation of a cap over the landfill area; collection and treatment of leachate; groundwater monitoring; and land use restrictions.
EPA has conducted several five-year reviews of the Site’s remedy. These reviews ensure that the remedies put in place protect public health and the environment, and function as intended. In 2005, the five-year review identified zinc contaminated soils in a second area in the Lawless Creek floodplain. This triggered an investigation resulting in an amendment to the remedy. Cleanup activities in 2017 included excavation and off-site disposal of zinc contaminated soils, soil backfilling, and vegetation planting at the site. No waste was left in place at Lawless Creek floodplain.
Following the cleanup of the Lawless Creek floodplain area in 2017, all known risks to human health and the environment have been addressed at the site, and EPA considers all short and long-term threats under control.
While EPA encourages site reuse throughout the cleanup process, deletions from the NPL can help revitalize communities and promote economic growth by signaling to potential developers and financial institutions that cleanup is complete.
Since 2017, EPA has deleted all or part of 82 sites from the NPL. In Fiscal Year (FY) 2017, EPA doubled the number of full and partial sites deleted over the previous fiscal year with a total of six sites. This past year, EPA continued to achieve an historically high rate of deletions with 14 full sites and parts of 13 additional sites, for a total of 27 deletions.
More information on EPA’s efforts at the site: https://19january2021snapshot.epa.gov/superfund/industriplex.