EPA reaches settlement with 13 companies for cleanup of Oxford Road Superfund site in N.S.

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NORTH SMITHFIELD – The Environmental Protection Agency has reached a proposed settlement with 13 “potentially responsible parties,” for remediation of groundwater contamination at the Landfill and Resource Recovery, Inc. Superfund Site on Oxford Road.

The 28-acre, an inactive landfill that began as a sand and gravel operation, began accepting residential waste in 1927, and over its years of operation it also accepted commercial and industrial wastes. Operation of the landfill permanently stopped in January 1985 after a state Superior Court order.

“This settlement is great news for the people of North Smithfield, and for taxpayers everywhere,” said EPA New England Regional Administrator David Cash. “Making meaningful progress to ensure Superfund sites like this one get cleaned up is a huge benefit for communities. Many communities where Superfund sites are located have suffered from disproportionate pollution burdens, so EPA is especially pleased that this settlement will expedite work in North Smithfield.”

The State of Rhode Island participated in negotiations of the settlement, which means costs of the groundwater cleanup plan selected by EPA will be covered by companies responsible for the contamination. The groundwater cleanup will address volatile organic compounds, metals, 1,4-dioxane, PFOA and PFOS contamination at the site, according to a release from the agency. The settlement also includes performance of a contingency remedy, if EPA determines the selected remedy will not meet cleanup levels in a reasonable time period.

The 13 parties participating in the consent decree are: Aerosols Danville Inc.; Clean Harbors of Braintree, Inc.; Avnet, Inc.; Waste Management of Massachusetts, Inc.; Bixby International Corporation; Waste Management of Rhode Island, Inc.; Corning Incorporated; Electric Boat Corporation; Life Technologies Corporation; NSTAR Electric Company; OCG Microelectronics Materials, Inc.; Ballantyne Legacy Holdings, LLC; and Stanley Black & Decker, Inc.

The cleanup is estimated to cost approximately $11.7 million, with the alternate contingency remedy at $14.6 million, and is expected to take two to three years to design and implement. Groundwater is expected to meet cleanup standards within 20 years.

EPA has estimated that more than 2 million gallons of hazardous chemicals including solvents, plating waste, asbestos, oils and dyes were brought to the landfill for disposal when it was active.

The settlement, filed in the U.S. District Court of Rhode Island on Wednesday, Nov. 9, is subject to a 30-day public comment period and approval by the federal court. A copy of the consent decree and information on how to provide comments will be available on the U.S. Department of Justice’s website: https://www.justice.gov/enrd/consent-decrees.

For more information about the Landfill and Resource Recovery, Inc. Superfund Site and cleanup progress visit: https://www.epa.gov/superfund/lrr.

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