WASHINGTON On Thursday the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) added seven hazardous waste sites to the National Priorities List (NPL) of Superfund sites.
The EPA is also proposing to add another five sites to the list, and one of those locations is in Michiana.
The North Shore Drive ground water plume has been identified as a site that may need special attention.
Superfund is the federal program that investigates and cleans up the most complex, uncontrolled or abandoned hazardous waste sites in the country to protect people’s health and the environment.
“Cleaning up contaminated land is critical to the protection of human health and the environment,” said Mathy Stanislaus, assistant administrator for EPA’s Office of Solid Waste and Emergency Response. “Superfund cleanups also play an important role in advancing the economic well-being of communities by turning formerly idle properties into productive community assets that can broaden tax bases, create jobs, enhance property values and support improved overall well-being.”
The Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation and Liability Act (CERCLA), the law establishing the Superfund program, requires EPA to update the NPL at least annually and clean up hazardous waste sites to protect human health with the goal of returning them to communities for productive use.
A site’s listing neither imposes a financial obligation on EPA nor assigns liability to any party.
Updates to the NPL do, however, provide policymakers with a list of high priority sites, serving to identify the size and nature of the nation’s cleanup challenges.
Since 1983, EPA has listed 1,701 sites on the NPL.