As the EPA promised, the long-awaited cleanup started at the southern pit of the San Jacinto River Waste Pits Superfund Site. The remediation of this portion of the site will be done in two parts.
Part One – Crews are removing vegetation from the site and building fences. They are also putting in a water treatment facility on the lower section of the southern pit and will use that part as a staging area.
In late December or early January, the physical removal of the contaminated material will start on the upper section. The EPA anticipates 25-30 trucks will haul the toxic waste to disposal facilities. Then they will backfill the upper section.
Part Two – Once the upper area is restored, crews will move the water treatment facility to that section and start removing contaminated material from the lower section. All told, remediation of the southern pit will take about two years.
If you have questions or concerns, contact us at THEA or EPA representative Lauren Poulos at 214-665-8371 or Poulos.lauren@Epa.gov.
That leaves the northern pit, where the EPA is still wrangling with the responsible parties, International Paper Company and Waste Management’s subsidiary, McGinnes Industrial Maintenance Corporation, on the cleanup plan. The EPA has already notified the companies that the design submitted earlier this year was inadequate and warned them that it won’t grant any more delays to the process.
This is a huge step forward. THEA founder and CEO, Jackie Medcalf, says Harris County officials and members of the San Jacinto Coalition deserve the credit.