BOSTON – The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) ongoing work to handle contamination points at the Callahan Mine Superfund Site will likely be considerably expedited thanks to an extra $12 million made out there by the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law (BIL), which is in addition to $9 million already designated beneath BIL for ongoing exercise at the location. The Callahan Mine website is one of 49 Superfund websites nationwide singled out by EPA for extra sources to handle a backlog of hazardous waste websites awaiting funding.
“Thanks to the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law and President Biden’s management, EPA is very happy that essential work to handle hazardous waste contamination at Callahan Mine will acquire momentum this summer time,” mentioned EPA New England Regional Administrator David W. Cash. “It’s a precedence for EPA to get this website off the Superfund backlog listing. Cleaning up this website is essential for the Brooksville group to develop options for potential future makes use of in this space.”
The Callahan Mine Superfund Site was earlier approved roughly $9 million in BIL funding to guarantee an ongoing section of building would proceed. The extra $12 million has now been approved to handle a brand new section of building exercise that had been on a backlog listing of Superfund building actions for which funding had been unavailable. Without the extra funding, there would doubtless have been a considerable delay between the completion of the present work to consolidate and cap waste rock piles and the beginning of the sediment cleanup. This delay would have required EPA to expend time and sources to rent a brand new contractor and remobilize tools and sources to the Site, extending the time required to full the cleanup. This funding will allow EPA to proceed the continuing cleanup actions and full the sediment cleanup ahead of anticipated, and in a fashion that maximizes use of sources.
The Callahan Mine website is one of 1000’s of contaminated websites nationally which were given Superfund standing due to the character and extent of hazardous wastes at the location, and the price and logistics related to cleansing them. Superfund websites can embody former manufacturing services, industrial areas, processing crops, landfills and mining websites. The $21 million allocation for Callahan Mine Superfund Site is a component of a $1 billion “first wave” of funding from $3.5 billion in the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law to assist cleanup polluted Superfund websites in communities throughout the nation. In addition to Callahan Mine, different New England areas focused for extra cash this yr to handle beforehand underfunded tasks consists of websites in Connecticut and Vermont.
The Callahan Mining Corp Site, added to the National Priorities List (NPL) in 2002, has been awaiting funding to full the present section of cleanup at the location since 2019. The website, situated on the northwestern facet of Cape Rosier on Penobscot Bay in Brooksville, Maine, is a former copper and zinc mine that operated from 1968 to 1972. The website features a (now submerged) 300-foot-deep open pit mine, former mine operations space, a collection of waste rock piles, and a tailings impoundment. Arsenic and lead contamination are discovered in the location’s soil and rock. Copper, lead, and zinc are current in the sediments at concentrations above ranges which might be acceptable for ecological receptors. Polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs) had been discovered in the realm the place the previous Callahan Mine operations services had been situated as properly.
EPA has studied and designed groundwater and sediment cleanup choices for the location, however extra work to implement the cleanup nonetheless wants to be executed. Past work at the location included stabilizing the tailing dam and shutting the tailing impoundment. Future work at the location will concentrate on the sediment cleanup actions, which is able to embody sediment excavation and dredging for the salt marsh, Goose Pond, Dyer Cove, and Goose Cove.
“From roads and bridges, to water programs and environmental cleanups, the bipartisan infrastructure regulation is making historic, overdue investments in Maine,” mentioned U.S. Senators Susan Collins and Angus King. “Long a problem for the Brooksville group, the acidic drainage from the Callahan Mine poses a risk to the well being of Hancock County residents and to Penobscot Bay. Thanks to this main funding and the onerous work of the city, we are able to speed up the remediation of the Callahan Mine – preserving Maine folks protected, defending our surroundings, and making a major funding in Brooksville. This is only the start of the investments coming from the bipartisan infrastructure regulation, and we glance ahead to seeing continued advantages for our state.”
“This new Superfund funding to clear up the Callahan Mine Site is nice information for Brooksville and Hancock County. By persevering with the EPA’s work with the State of Maine, this funding will assist clear up the mine website and defend the group round it from polluted discharges,” mentioned U.S. Congressman Jared Golden. “This mission was funded by the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law, which I used to be proud to assist cross. I’m glad to see this and different essential mission funded by this regulation get underway throughout Maine.”
EPA is finalizing cleanup plans and getting ready funding mechanisms to get building work began as quickly as doable. More details about funding for backlogged websites and accelerated cleanup websites will likely be out there in the approaching weeks.
In 1980, the Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation and Liability Act, often known as Superfund, was handed. The novel regulation gave EPA the authority and funds to maintain polluters accountable for cleansing up essentially the most contaminated websites throughout the nation. When no viable accountable celebration is discovered or can not afford the cleanup, funds appropriated by Congress are used. A tax on chemical and petroleum industries offered funds to the Superfund Trust fund for Superfund cleanups up till 1995. The Bipartisan Infrastructure Law reinstates the chemical excise taxes and invests an extra $3.5 billion in environmental remediation at Superfund websites, making it one of the most important investments in American historical past to handle the legacy air pollution that harms the general public well being of communities and neighborhoods.
The Bipartisan Infrastructure Law is a once-in-a-generation funding that can create hundreds of thousands of jobs modernizing our infrastructure, flip the local weather disaster into a possibility, and put us on a path to win the financial competitors for the 21st century.