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Three PCB-contaminated sites in Monroe County have been declared as Superfund sites on the National Priorities List (NPL): Lemon Lane Landfill, Neal's Landfill, and Bennett Stone Quarry (Bennett's Dump) (Figure 1). Neal's Dump, in Owen County, is another Superfund Site associated with PCBs from Westinghouse (now CBS) 1.

Several other sites in Monroe County also were contaminated with PCBs, including Illinois Central/Quarry Springs, Winston-Thomas Sewage Treatment Plant and surrounding areas, Westinghouse/ABB Facility, Fell Iron & Metal, and Anderson Road Landfill. Additionally, there are numerous sites around Monroe County where residents inadvertently spread PCB-contaminated sludge in their yards.

pcbs U.S. Geological Survey 2. Note: The sites shown were contaminated in the past, but are not necessarily contaminated currently, and may not pose a health or environmental threat.

Superfund Sites

Lemon Lane Landfill and Neal's Landfill were listed on the NPL in 1983, and Bennett Stone Quarry was listed in 1984 3. Aside from emergency actions taken by EPA, the first phase of cleanup at these sites occurred in 1987. During this phase, regulators sought to remove contaminated sediments and to contain pollution at the affected sites. The second phase was to involve the construction and operation of a high temperature incinerator using municipal solid waste as a fuel source. However, the incinerator plans were abandoned in the early 90's after the State of Indiana passed laws blocking the construction of the incinerator. These laws were passed in response to the Bloomington community's concerns over emissions, long-term operation of the incinerator, and ash disposal. Alternative remedies were eventually agreed upon and implemented. The resulting remediation actions and results are described below.


Lemon Lane Landfill

From 1958 to 1964, the Lemon Lane Landfill, located on 10 acres at Vernal Pike and Highway 37, accepted PCB-contaminated capacitors for disposal. The Landfill, which had no liner or runoff controls, contains sinkholes and other karst features. The most significant health concern is groundwater contamination, as PCBs migrate from the landfill to the Illinois Central Spring, Quarry Spring, and Slaughterhouse Spring, all three of which empty into Clear Creek 4, 5.

In 1987, Westinghouse removed exposed capacitors and stained soils, and capped the landfill with a synthetic liner. EPA then fenced off the area, minimizing the potential for direct human contact with PCBs. In 1996, soil contamination was measured as high as 200,000 parts per million (ppm) compared to 50ppm, the level at which EPA considers non-liquid materials to be contaminated 6, 7.

In 2000, the site was excavated, resulting in the removal of around 80,000 tons of PCB-contaminated material, which was transported to a landfill in Michigan. Additionally, 4,400 capacitors weighing 228 tons were incinerated in Port Arthur, Texas. A permanent, synthetic cap was installed on top of the site 8.

Because PCBs have migrated deep into the underlying bedrock, they continue to be released into nearby springs, particularly during heavy rainstorms. The Illinois Central Spring receives the bulk of the contamination, but samples taken from Quarry Springs and Slaughterhouse Spring also indicate the presence of PCBs. Concentrations greater than 20 ppb have been measured in Illinois Central Spring, compared to concentrations less than 2.0 ppb at Quarry Springs and less than 0.2 ppb at Slaughterhouse Springs 9.

An interim facility capable of treating 1,000 gallons of spring water per minute was installed at Illinois Central Spring in May 2000. Effluent samples from the treatment plant generally do not contain PCBs in detectable amounts, indicating that PCBs are not entering Clear Creek in large amounts. However, PCBs continue to show up in influent samples, confirming that PCBs are being released from the bedrock under the landfill 10. The 2009 Consent Decree Amendment required that the treatment plant be expanded, and that the plant begin treating flow from two other springs. Sediment around the springs is also to be cleaned up to a standard of 1 ppm PCBs, and the water will be treated until the groundwater that surfaces at Illinois Central Springs averages no more than 0.3 ppb, in compliance with the National Pollution Discharge Elimination System (NPDES) permit program controls water pollution by regulating point sources that discharge pollutants into the waters of the United States 11.


Neal's Landfill

This 18-acre site in western Monroe County accepted PCB-contaminated capacitors and related materials from Westinghouse from 1962 to 1970. Springs at the base of the landfill feed Conard's Branch of Richland Creek. As a result, sediment, vegetation, and fish in Richland Creek are contaminated with PCBs 12.

In 1987, interim control measures similar to those at Lemon Lane were implemented at Neal's Landfill. Along with securing the site, sediment was removed from Conard's Branch and an activated carbon treatment system was installed to treat contaminated water from springs near the landfill.

In 1999, 41,750 tons of contaminated material (>500 ppm) were excavated and transported to an off-site facility. Additionally, 4,120 capacitors weighing 485,000 pounds were removed for incineration and the landfill was consolidated to reduce its size to 10 acres. A permanent landfill cap was installed.

Samples taken during October, 2004 in Richland Creek and Conard's Branch indicate that PCBs were detectable in sediment samples. PCB concentrations of some samples taken from the banks of Conard's Branch exceeded 50 ppm, but most were well below that amount, with no samples in Richland Creek exceeding 1.0 ppm. Flood plain, surface sediment samples, and deep core sediment samples were much lower than samples taken from the banks.

As part of the Neal's Landfill Long-Term Groundwater Monitoring Program, Viacom is required to monitor PCB levels during normal and storm flow conditions, and to sample fish from Conard's Branch and Richland Creek. Monitoring results suggest that the amount of PCBs being released into Richland Creek is declining, as is the amount in fish 13.

Samples taken during October, 2004 in Richland Creek and Conard's Branch indicate that PCBs were detectable in sediment samples. PCB concentrations of some samples taken from the banks of Conard's Branch exceeded 50 ppm, but most were well below that amount, with no samples in Richland Creek exceeding 1.0 ppm. Flood plain, surface sediment samples, and deep core sediment samples were much lower than samples taken from the banks 14.

In 2007, the remediation plan was revised to expand the collection and treatment of contaminated ground water, and implement a new treatment standard of 0.3 ppb. CBS also agreed to remove PCB contaminated sediments from the stream banks and floodplain of Conrad Branch. Implementation has not yet begun.


Bennett Stone Quarry (Bennett's Dump)

This four-acre site is located 2.5 miles northwest of Bloomington in a sparsely populated area. PCB-contaminated capacitors were dumped here during the 1960s and 1970s. Contaminated groundwater emerging from springs on the site empty into Stout's Creek 15.

In 1987, Westinghouse removed 252 PCB-contaminated capacitors from the site, along with contaminated soil and sediment in Stout's Creek. Then in 1999, Viacom (formerly Westinghouse) removed 36,175 tons of PCB-contaminated material along with 1,750 capacitors. In 2000, 10 cubic yards of contaminated sediment were removed from Stout's Creek. Following these removal actions, the average contamination of Bennett's Dump was 11.3 ppm.

In 2002, the Indiana Department of Transportation completed an interchange for S.R. 37 and S.R. 46, which altered stormwater drainage patterns. Viacom believes that this construction may have led to increased flow from contaminated springs 16.

PCB levels in Stout's Creek have been monitored for the past several years. Data collected through 2003 do not provide a clear indication of PCB trends around Bennett's Dump. It is clear, however, that PCBs continue to be released into Stout's Creek 17.

In January, 2006, EPA proposed a plan that would address the ongoing release of PCBs from Bennett's Dump. The plan would require the capture and treatment of PCB-contaminated groundwater that is currently being released into Stout's Creek. Additionally, quarries that contribute to the re-charge of the contaminated groundwater system would need to be drained. This would be the final remedy for Bennett's Dump 18.

Other Contaminated Sites

Along with the Superfund Sites discussed above, several locations throughout Bloomington and Monroe County were contaminated with PCBs from Westinghouse. Cleanup at these sites was mandated by the 1985 Consent Decree between Westinghouse, the City of Bloomington, Monroe County, and EPA.


Westinghouse/ABB Facility

This facility, located at 300 Curry Pike in Bloomington, was the original source of PCB contamination in the Bloomington area. Capacitors containing PCBs were built here from 1958 to 1976. Asea Brown Boveri (ABB) became the building's sole proprietor in 1990.

In 1989, EPA ordered Westinghouse to clean up PCB-contaminated soils at the site. By 1996, around 22,500 cubic yards of contaminated soil had been excavated and disposed of at licensed facilities. Most of this material went to a landfill in Utah 19.

Despite these measures, the site remained highly contaminated, with samples ranging from 84 to 21,000 ppm inside the building. In 2006, ABB began demolishing the facility under the supervision of EPA. Additional cleanup of contaminated soils will be undertaken by CBS (formerly Westinghouse) 20. In 2009, the company excavated 3,916 tons of contaminated concrete and 40,500 tons of contaminated soil from the site. Around 1,000,000 gallons of water have been extracted and treated. Water was treated to a standard of 0.3 micrograms of PCBs per kilogram of contaminated medium (or parts per billion - ppb) The site also implemented a 5-year ground and surface water-monitoring program in 2008. 21.


Winston-Thomas Treatment Plant

Located on 26 acres south of Bloomington and adjacent to Clear Creek, this site served as the City's wastewater treatment plant from 1933 to 1982. PCB-contaminated wastewater, which was received from Westinghouse from 1958 until 1978, affected nearly every component of the Treatment Plant, as contaminated sludge was pumped into treatment lagoons and sinkholes, and spread onto the ground. Additionally, farmers and gardeners used the sludge as a soil amendment, causing several locations throughout Monroe County to become contaminated. Two areas beyond the Treatment Plant's boundaries were also contaminated: an area east of the entrance road, and the West side of Clear Creek 22.

In 1987, interim measures were taken to reduce the likelihood of human exposure at Winston-Thomas. Additionally, an interim storage facility was built on-site to house PCB wastes removed from other contaminated sites. However, it was not until 1997 that full remediation of the site began. Cleanup was finished in 1999.

Sampling of several springs at the site shows that PCB levels have declined considerably. In many cases, PCBs are undetectable 23. Similar results have been obtained for Clear Creek sediment and nearby wells.


Fell Iron and Metal

From 1958 to 1968, PCB-contaminated capacitors were salvaged for copper at this 5.4-acre site located at 504 North Rogers Street. In 1984, EPA discovered PCB soil contamination levels as high as 71,700 ppm 24.

In 1989, more than 500 capacitors were removed from the site and disposed of in two licensed incinerators. Approximately 16,000 cubic yards of soil (400 truckloads) were excavated at that time and stockpiled on-site for several years 25. In 1996, the contaminated soil was transported to Utah for final disposal in a landfill. Soil sampling following this removal indicated PCB levels below 10 ppm 26.


Anderson Road Landfill

Located north of the city, this facility served as the Monroe County Landfill until 2004. PCB wastes were disposed of in a small portion of the Landfill during the 1960s and 1970s. In 1987, PCB-contaminated wastes were excavated from the landfill. Along with water from a contaminated pond, these wastes were transferred to the Winston-Thomas Treatment Plant, which was later decontaminated 27.

References

1. Environmental Protection Agency. National Priorities List Sites in Indiana: Monroe County.

2. U.S. Geological Survey. National Hyrdography Dataset

3. Environmental Protection Agency. National Priorities List Sites in Indiana: Monroe County.

4. Environmental Protection Agency. 2005. Five Year Review Report for the Lemon Lane Landfill (pdf).

5. Environmental Protection Agency. NPL Fact Sheets for Indiana: Lemon Lane Landfill

6. Environmental Protection Agency. Polychlorinated Biphenyls (PCBs): Manufacturing, Processing, Distribution in Commerce, and Use Prohibitions. (40 CFR 761).

7. Environmental Protection Agency. Environmental Protection Agency. 2005. Five Year Review Report for the Lemon Lane Landfill (pdf).

8. Viacom, Inc. April 22, 2005. Surface Water, Flow and Water Level Monitoring, Second Quarter, 2004. Lemon Lane Landfill. Available at the MCPL (GN 4200).

9. Environmental Field Services, Inc. February 15, 2006; March 15, 2006. Memos to Ms. Jessica Fliss, Project Manager, Indiana Department of Environmental Management, regarding Illinois Central Spring Treatment Plant. Available in the Indiana Room of the Monroe County Public Library.

10. Environmental Protection Agency. NPL Fact Sheets for Indiana: Neal's Landfill.

11. Environmental Protection Agency. National Pollution Discharge Elimination System (NPDES).

12. Viacom, Inc. July, 2004. Final Report for the Groundwater Investigation at Neal's Landfill (pdf).

13. Viacom, Inc. January, 2005. Conard's Branch and Richland Creek Sediment Sampling and Analysis Report. QAPJP Vol. XXXVI. Available at the MCPL (GN4205).

14. Environmental Protection Agency. NPL Fact Sheets for Indiana: Neal's Landfill.

15. Viacom, Inc. 2004. Final Report for the Groundwater Investigation at Bennett's Dump (pdf).

16. Viacom, Inc. 2004. Final Report for the Groundwater Investigation at Bennett's Dump (pdf).

17. Environmental Protection Agency. 2006. Proposed Plan for the Record of Decision Amendment Operable Units Two and Three Bennett's Dump Superfund Site (pdf).

18. Tetra Tech EM, Inc. June, 2002. Revised Field Sampling Plan for Asea Brown Boveri Facility and Bennett's Dump Site, Monroe County, Indiana.

19. The Coalition Opposed to PCB Ash in Monroe County, Indiana. Westinghouse/ABB Facility.

20. The Coalition Opposed to PCB Ash in Monroe County, Indiana. A Summary of the Remediation at the Winston-Thomas Treatment Plant.

21. United States Environmental Protection Agency. "Floor Removal and Soil Clean-up Planned at Site". 2009. Source: Citizens Opposed to PCB Ash. Accessed October 7, 2010.

22. Viacom, Inc. May, 2002. Long-term Groundwater Monitoring Plan for the Winston-Thomas Site.

23. Environmental Protection Agency. 1989. Engineering Evaluation and Cost Analysis: Soil Cleanup Technologies Recommended, Fell Iron and Metal Inc..

24. Environmental Protection Agency. May, 1995. Fell Iron and Metal Decision Amendment Proposal (txt).

25. PSARA Technologies, Inc. December, 1995. Project Memorandum: Westinghouse Electric Corporation, Fell Iron and Metal Site (txt).

26. The Coalition Opposed to PCB Ash in Monroe County, Indiana. Anderson Road Landfill.