Released August 2, 2017
The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency issued its final cleanup plan today for the BoRit Asbestos Superfund Site in Montgomery County, Pa. that includes establishing new safeguards to support capping work that has already been constructed over much of the site.
“EPA is confident that this cleanup plan provides long-term protection of human health and the environment,” said Acting EPA Mid-Atlantic Regional Administrator Cecil Rodrigues. “The plan was selected after a detailed investigation that included researching multiple remedy options, and a public participation process that included a 90-day public comment period.”
The cleanup plan incorporates work that has already been completed at the site which includes covering the asbestos-containing wastes, soils, and reservoir sediments with geotextile fabric, a minimum of two feet of clean material, and six inches of topsoil and vegetation.
The BoRit site consists of three parcels: the park located in Whitpain Township; the asbestos pile in Ambler Borough; and the reservoir located in Upper Dublin Township. The reservoir is currently being reused as a waterfowl preserve and the park may be reopened in the future.
In addition to the capping work that has been completed, the plan includes post-construction sampling, restrictions on future use, and long-term maintenance and monitoring. EPA, which is funding all cleanup costs, estimates past and future costs at $27.1 million. This includes the completed capping work and future monitoring and long-term maintenance.
The BoRit Asbestos Site was added to EPA’s National Priorities List in 2009 because the nearby residential population could potentially be exposed to airborne asbestos and to asbestos contamination in and along Tannery Run, Rose Valley Creek and the Wissahickon Creek.
The site was used to dispose of asbestos-containing material from the 1930s to the 1970s that came from a nearby asbestos-manufacturing plant.
This cleanup plan announcement follows EPA’s announcement of the Superfund Task Force recommendations to improve the Superfund program.
The task force’s recommendations focused on five overarching goals: expediting cleanup and remediation, reinvigorating cleanup and reuse efforts by potentially responsible parties, encouraging private investment to facilitate cleanup and reuse, promoting redevelopment and community revitalization and engaging with partners and stakeholders.
Work to prioritize and reinvigorate the program by the task force has been initiated and will be ongoing into the future.
The Superfund Task Force Recommendations can be viewed at https://www.epa.gov/superfund/