EPA adds the CTS of Asheville site to its Superfund roster

Four new Southeast properties have been named Superfund sites by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency — almost half the nine added to the roster nationwide. The CTS of Asheville site off Mills Gap Road is one of them. (Visit http://avl.mx/au to view key documents in the CTS case. For prior Xpress coverage of the issue, go to www.mountainx.com/cts.)

Here is the full press release from the EPA:

(ATLANTA – March. 13, 2012) The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency has added four new hazardous waste sites in the southeast that pose risks to human health and the environment to the National Priorities List (NPL) of Superfund sites. EPA is also proposing to add another three sites to the list. Superfund is the federal program that investigates and cleans up the most complex, uncontrolled or abandoned hazardous waste sites in the country.

The following four sites in the Southeast have been added to the National Priorities List:
• CTS of Asheville, Inc. (former electronics components manufacturer) in Asheville, N.C.
• Continental Cleaners (former dry cleaners) in Miami, Fla.;
• Chemfax, Inc. (former manufacturer of synthetic resins and waxes) in Gulfport, Miss.;
• Southeastern Wood Preserving (former wood treating operation) in Canton, Miss.; and

The following three sites have been proposed for addition to the National Priorities List:
•  Fairfax St. Wood Treaters (former wood treating operation) in Jacksonville, Fla.;
•  Macon Naval Ordnance Plant (former ordnance manufacturer) in Macon, Ga.; and
•  Holcomb Creosote Co (former wood treating operation) in Yadkinville, N.C.

EPA is also withdrawing its earlier proposal to add the Arnold Engineering Development Center site in Coffee and Franklin Counties, Tennessee, to the NPL. This site is being addressed under the Resource Conservation and Recovery Act (RCRA) program. Cleanup is progressing successfully, the migration of contaminated ground water is under control and measures have been taken that are protective of human health.

Since 1983, 1,661 sites have been listed on the NPL. Of these sites, 359 sites have been cleaned up resulting in 1,302 sites currently on the NPL (including the nine sites added today). There are 62 proposed sites (including the 10 announced today) awaiting final agency action.

Contaminants found at the sites include arsenic, benzene, cadmium, chromium, copper, creosote, dichloroethene (DCE), lead, mercury, polynuclear aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs), polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs), tetrachloroethylene (PCE), pentachlorophenol (PCP), trichloroethane (TCA), trichloroethylene (TCE), toluene, uranium and zinc.

With all NPL sites, EPA works to identify companies or people responsible for the contamination at a site, and require them to conduct or pay for the cleanup. For the newly listed sites without viable potentially responsible parties, EPA will investigate the full extent of the contamination before starting significant cleanup at the site. Therefore, it may be several years before significant EPA clean up funding is required for these sites.

Contaminated sites may be placed on the list through various mechanisms:
• Numeric ranking established by EPA’s Hazard Ranking System

• Designation by states or territories of one top-priority site

• Meeting all three of the following requirements:
–  The Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry (ATSDR) of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services has issued a health advisory that recommends removing people from the site;
–  EPA determines the site poses a significant threat to public health; and
–  EPA anticipates it will be more cost-effective to use its remedial authority than to use its emergency removal authority to respond to the site.

Federal Register notices and supporting documents for the final and proposed sites: http://www.epa.gov/superfund/sites/npl/current.htm

Information about how a site is listed on the NPL:

Superfund sites in local communities:


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About Margaret Williams
Editor Margaret Williams first wrote for Xpress in 1994. An Alabama native, she has lived in Western North Carolina since 1987 and completed her Masters of Liberal Arts & Sciences from UNC-Asheville in 2016. Follow me @mvwilliams

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