The United States, on behalf of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (USEPA), and Wyeth Holdings LLC (WH), formerly known as American Cyanamid Company and the current owner of the American Cyanamid Superfund Site, have reached a formal agreement to proceed with implementation of the site-wide remedy at the American Cyanamid Superfund Site.
Under this agreement, WH will move forward with the implementation of the remedy of site soils, site groundwater, and a majority of the remaining impoundments still requiring remediation, as described in the Record of Decision issued by USEPA on September 27, 2012. This Consent Decree is an important step that allows WH to continue moving forward with efforts to address impacts from past industrial operations on the site.
A Pilot Study, or field demonstration test, is underway on Impoundments 1 and 2, located south of the freight rail line. Design of the field demonstration test was completed in June 2013 and construction of the required infrastructure began in August 2013. The pilot test will operate through the first half of 2014. All work is being done with oversight by USEPA and NJDEP.
On March 18, 2013, USEPA and WH executed an Administrative Settlement Agreement and Order on Consent to move forward with remedial design for the site-wide remedy and other technical elements at the American Cyanamid Superfund Site. Under this agreement, WH will move forward with design and engineering to address site-wide soil, groundwater and six impoundments still requiring remediation, as described in the Record of Decision issued by USEPA on September 27, 2012. This agreement also formally authorizes WH to prepare the Focused Feasibility Study (FFS) for USEPA Operable Unit 8 (OU8), commonly referred to as Impoundments 1 and 2. In addition, under this agreement WH will continue ongoing monitoring of ambient air, groundwater, surface water and sediment, as well as operation of the groundwater Removal Action system located in the southeast portion of the property.
The USEPA released the Proposed Plan for the American Cyanamid Superfund Site on February 16, 2012. This plan identifies the preferred alternative for addressing the site-wide soils, groundwater, and the contents of the impoundments that have not yet been remediated, with the exception of Impoundments 1 and 2, and provides the rationale for those preferences.
USEPA held a public meeting on March 8, 2012 to explain the Proposed Plan and the alternatives presented in the Feasibility Study. USEPA accepted written comments on the Proposed Plan during the public comment period which ran through May 15, 2012.
The Proposed Plan and Site-Wide Feasibility Study, and other supporting documents, are available to the public at the Bridgewater Township Branch of the Somerset County Library, the USEPA Region 2 Records Center, and the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection.
A revised site-wide Feasibility Study, which describes a number of alternative remedial approaches, was submitted to USEPA in December 2010. This comprehensive document was reviewed by USEPA, NJDEP, Bridgewater Township, and CRISIS. Based upon the comments received from stakeholders, Pfizer will submit a revised Site-wide FS and proposed Site-wide Remedy by August 2011.
In January 2011, Pfizer received test data on water that was reaching the Raritan River through a seep, which is a natural phenomenon where groundwater reaches the ground surface. The data showed detectable concentrations of certain organic compounds, including benzene that exceeded certain New Jersey State surface water criteria. Pfizer alerted the USEPA and the NJDEP that same day and began developing both short- and long-term plans to stop the compounds from reaching the Raritan River. Working with USEPA, NJDEP and other stakeholders, Pfizer developed and secured approval to install activated carbon sandbags at the groundwater table near the river’s edge. This immediate action, which is designed to treat the compounds before reaching the river, was completed in March 2011.
On November 4, 2009, a Site-wide Feasibility Study (FS) was submitted to USEPA. This document was reviewed by the USEPA Region 2, the USEPA National Remedy Review Board, NJDEP, and CRISIS, the community group providing technical oversight on behalf of local residents. Based upon their comments, USEPA issued a letter to Pfizer on October 18, 2010 requesting revisions to the Site-Wide FS and proposed Site-wide Remedy. Pfizer and its consultants will address these comments and submit a revised Site-wide FS and proposed Site-wide Remedy in December 2010.