EPA officials have announced an $11.5 million proposal
to address hazardous waste contamination at the Mansfield Trail Dump Superfund Site in Byram, NJ. These cleanup initiatives include a cap on former dump areas, treatment of contaminated groundwater, and removal of contaminated soil with assistance from local officials.
The proposal released on July 15 suggests the cap on former dump areas
is designed to prevent rainwater from reaching the hazardous waste and spreading contamination further.
In addition, EPA will implement a vapor extraction treatment system to reduce volatile organic compounds (VOCs) in groundwater. They also plan to dig up contaminated soil for proper disposal.
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About the Mansfield Trail Dump Superfund Site
The Mansfield Trail Dump site consists of several former waste disposal trenches
on wooded, undeveloped properties. The secluded location made this an ideal site for industrial and septic waste disposal
from approximately the late 1950’s to at least the early 1970’s.
Numerous contaminants have since been found by EPA and NJ Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) in neighboring wells, including VOCs like trichloroethylene (TCE) and cis-1,2-dichloroethene (cis-1,2-DCE).
Volatile Organic Compounds
VOCs are commonly released from burning gasoline, wood, coal, and natural gas. However, we can also inhale these compounds from many consumer products
, such as cigarettes, adhesives, dry cleaning fluid, disinfectants, and pesticides, to name a few.
Many VOCs are a persistent and prevalent hazard in groundwater
because of their long term and widespread use in these and many other products that business and consumers use on a day-to-day basis. When compounds combine with nitrogen oxides in the air, they can form smog.
Exposure to VOCs may cause a vast range of health complications
from eye irritation, headaches, and memory disorders to loss of coordination, central nervous system failure, and cancer.
The Future of the Mansfield Trail Dump Site
As part of the proposal, Federal officials will conduct monitoring and testing to ensure cleanup effectiveness. This also includes evaluating nearby homes and buildings for chemical vapors that may migrate from groundwater to the air.
Once remediation is completed, EPA will reevaluate the site every 5 years.
A public meeting is scheduled for 7 p. m on July 23 at the Byram Township Municipal Building to discuss the proposal. EPA is also accepting public comments via email here until August 13, 2019.
The public may also submit comments by mail to Anne Rosenblatt, Remedial Project Manager, U.S. EPA, 290 Broadway, 19th Floor, New York, NY 10007.
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