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News Releases from Region 05

EPA removes 671 East Chicago, Indiana, residences from Superfund List

Contact Information: 
Francisco Arcaute (
312-886-7613, 312-898-2042 cell

For Immediate Release No. 20-OPA-013

EAST CHICAGO, Ind. (Oct. 2, 2020) — Today, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) officially deleted 671 cleaned-up properties at the USS Lead Site from the Superfund National Priorities List (NPL). EPA held a 30-day public comment and a summary of agency’s response to comments has been made available to commenters and the public.

To date, lead-contaminated soil has been removed from 95% of the 1,078 properties – mostly residential – in Zones 2 and 3 at the USS Lead Superfund Site. The agency has confirmed that 671 of these properties meet the cleanup level required by a 2012 federal legal agreement, as amended in 2018. These properties have no contamination at-depth and are cleared for residential use. No further action is necessary for soil at these properties, and the soil poses no unacceptable risk to human health and the environment.

The remaining properties in Zones 2 and 3 will stay on the NPL until lead soil cleanups have been completed and confirmed. EPA continues to investigate possible groundwater contamination in the area. Properties in Zone 1 will also stay on the NPL until these properties are remediated.

“This administration has kept its promise to the people of East Chicago by removing lead from their homes and improving public health in their hometown,” said EPA Regional Administrator Kurt Thiede. “This agency remains strongly committed to picking up the pace of Superfund cleanups across the nation, and I am eager to keep up our great momentum in East Chicago until we finish the job at all the remaining properties.”

The residential properties removed from the USS Lead Superfund Site may be eligible for funding through the city of East Chicago’s Residential Repair Program. Deletion also enables the city to redevelop vacant lots. 

The NPL tracks the nation’s most contaminated sites that threaten human health or the environment. Sites on the list are eligible for cleanup under the Superfund program. EPA removes sites or parts of sites from the list once all the remedies are successfully implemented with no further cleanup. Operations and maintenance, monitoring and five-year reviews continue as required.

EPA’s 30-day public comment period on the proposed partial deletion began July 8, 2020 and closed August 7, 2020. For EPA’s response to comments and more information: