U.S. EPA Contaminated Site Cleanup Information (CLU-IN)

U.S. Environmental Protection Agency
U.S. EPA Technology Innovation and Field Services Division



Green Remediation at Lawrence Aviation Site

The cleanup efforts at the Lawrence Aviation Superfund Site in Port Jefferson, NY embrace sustainable and green remediation practices. Green remediation practices for long term cleanup efforts make the cleanup more efficient and more sustainable for the surrounding community. The groundwater treatment plant at the site has a number of green features including sustainable sourcing, local labor and geo-thermal heating and cooling.

How a Superfund Site Gets Cleaned Up: Fletcher's Paint Superfund Site Case Study

This video walks audiences through the Superfund cleanup process at the Fletcher's Paint Superfund Site in Milford, NH, where there has been significant work done to analyze and study the site, work with the State of New Hampshire and Responsible Parties to then design a cleanup and cleanup the site.

Pacific Coast Pipeline Superfund Site Cleanup

Learn about the soil and groundwater cleanup at the Pacific Coast Pipeline Superfund Site near Fillmore, CA, located at the southern end of Ventura County. A refinery operated there until 1950, and the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency is now overseeing the cleanup so the property can be restored and put to beneficial use.

Wyckoff Eagle Harbor Superfund Cleanup

The former creosote treating facility on Bainbridge Island in Washington State requires a coordinated effort to address contamination on the land and in the water. Three remedies are being used, groundwater treatment, a seawall to prevent chemicals from reaching Puget Sound, and a protective cap on the sea floor. Site investigation from the EPA Scientific Diving Team monitors how the sea floor is recovering. State, local and community partners are critical to the success of the cleanup efforts.

Using Bacteria to Clean Up Toxic Waste in California

US EPA's proposed enhanced biological treatment uses cheese whey and molasses as a food source for natural microbes that live in the soil and ground water. The video describes the use of this enhanced biological treatment (or bioremediation) at the Romic facility in East Palo Alto, California. These microbes break down the contaminants into carbon dioxide, water and salt.

Boston Harbor Cleanup

State, EPA personnel and Boston area activists recall the Boston Harbor cleanup. Highlights: EPA's role in the process, the dreadful condition of the harbor beforehand, the major construction projects it took to get the harbor clean and what having a clean harbor has meant to marine life and how the change has affected the average Bostonian's quality of life.

Del Amo Cleanup

Learn about the soil vapor extraction/bioventing system at the Del Amo Superfund Site, Waste Pits Area, in Los Angeles, California. See how it works to remove cancer-causing benzene from the soil, and how progress is measured.

United Heckathorn Cleanup

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency is taking action to fully understand and address the current extent and impacts of DDT contamination at the United Heckathorn Superfund site in Richmond, California. Recent sediment sampling in the harbor will help EPA identify the source of DDT that has been re-contaminating the Lauritzen Channel since earlier cleanup activities.

Blackwell Forest Preserve: A Reuse Success Story Video

At the DuPage County Landfill/Blackwell Forest Preserve Superfund site in DuPage County, Illinois, remedial actions have addressed site contamination, and local residents of all ages are celebrating a rich selection of year-round recreational uses. At the outset, the municipal landfill was established on 40‐acres of the 1,500‐acre Blackwell Forest Preserve, with the goal of creating the "hill", known as Mount Hoy, to serve as the centerpiece of the forest preserve. Current land uses at the site include 40 acres of restored habitat for ecological uses and public recreation, as well as trails, an observation area, archery range, urban stream research facility and fishing pier.

Ecological Reuse: The Importance of Ecological Reuse

One of the EPA's main goals is to restore contaminated properties and return them to beneficial reuse. Ecological revitalization transforms contaminated sites into functioning habitats, and it can provide substantial cost savings compared to traditional remedies and create significant community benefits. This video presents examples of successful EPA ecological revitalization projects at two Superfund sites: the Palmerton Zinc Pile Site in Palmerton, Pennsylvania and the Ryeland Road Arsenic site in Berks County, Pennsylvania.

After the Storm: Co-Produced by the U.S. EPA and The Weather Channel

The show highlights three case studies—Santa Monica Bay, the Mississippi River Basin/Gulf of Mexico, and New York City—where polluted runoff threatens watersheds highly valued for recreation, commercial fisheries and navigation, and drinking water. Key scientists and water quality experts, and citizens involved in local and national watershed protection efforts provide insight into the problems as well as solutions to today's water quality challenges. After the Storm also explains simple things people can do to protect their local watershed-such as picking up after one's dog, recycling household hazardous wastes, and conserving water. The program is intended for educational and communication purposes in classrooms, conferences, etc.

UFP-QAPP Workbook

The Intergovernmental Data Quality Task Force (IDQTF) has developed a Uniform Federal Policy (UFP) guiding the development of Quality Assurance Project Plans (QAPPs). UFP-QAPP worksheets streamline the process of documenting the systematic project planning process and data collection plans. The UFP-QAPP Workbook contains the individual QAPP worksheets. A fillable Workbook in MSWord format and a 20-minute video answering common questions about the relevance of the UFP QAPP can be downloaded. The UFP-QAPP Manual and other UFP information can be accessed on EPA's website. UFP-QAPP classroom instruction in using the Workbook is coordinated through the Navy.

Superfund Risk Assessment and How You Can Help

EPA developed the 40-minute video "Superfund Risk Assessment and How You Can Help" to help explain in plain terms the Superfund human health risk assessment process and how communities can be involved. The video lays the groundwork for in-depth discussion on human health risk assessment, how it relates to cleanup, and how people can be involved. The community interviews in the video enhance the message that early community involvement is important to the Superfund cleanup program. A presenter’s manual is available, designed to support EPA Superfund staff during public presentation of the 40-minute video.

The 10-minute introductory video contains information extracted from the 40-minute video. This video could be shown to a community to assess whether they want to know more about human health risk assessment.

To request a copy of a transcript for this video, please contact Jean Balent at

Also available is a 19-minute video "Superfund Radiation Risk Assessment and How You Can Help: An Overview" which explains in plain terms the Superfund human health risk assessment process for radioactive contaminants and how communities can be involved.

Hurricane Katrina, Hurricane Rita: A Coordinated Response

USEPA's role in the multi-agency emergency response to the nation's largest natural disaster is examined. Non-traditional activities like search and rescue as well as more traditional tasks such as HAZMAT collection, floodwater, sediment, and air sampling are presented. EPA coordinated their response using the Incident Command System through the National Incident Management System and the National Response Plan. Running time is 23 minutes.

In Small Doses: Arsenic

Researchers from the Dartmouth Toxic Metals Research Program have created a 10-minute video for the general public on the subject of arsenic. Funded by the National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences Superfund Research Program, the film brings home findings of research on arsenic in well water by identifying high-concentration areas in New England and offering pointers for residents relying on wells for their drinking water. To educate residents about health problems associated with arsenic and what they can do to protect themselves, Dartmouth provides links to additional information from EPA and the U.S. Geological Survey, as well as to state agencies that offer well-water testing for as little as $10.

Reining in the Storm — One Building at a Time

The 30-minute film is about Low Impact Development (LID) in Virginia and is funded through the Virginia Department of Conservation and Recreation and the Chesapeake Bay Program and administered by the Northern Virginia Regional Commission.

Linking Girls to the Land: Working Together to Conserve Natural Resources

"Linking Girls to the Land" initiative gives Girl Scouts a deeper personal connection with the outdoors and the environment in an increasingly urbanized society. When girls gain outdoor experiences in conservation education, they build the foundation for important life skills, a lifetime appreciation for nature, and the start of potential careers in natural resource conservation. The video highlights the "Linking Girls to the Land"; Partnership among Federal agencies and Girl Scouts of the USA, on behalf of girls throughout America.

Crozet Phytoremediation

This video highlights EPA's Green Remediation initiative, which considers the environmental effects of the remedial strategy early in the process, and incorporates options to maximize the net environmental benefit of the cleanup. From the selection and design of the remediation technology, to the management of on site activities, to the use of energy conservation and alternative sources of clean energy, Green Remediation helps save natural resources and taxpayers money. In this presentation, a former orchard in Crozet, VA is cleaned using Phytoremediation and incorporates many of the Green Remediation goals.

Biosolids Recycling: Restore, Reclaim, Remediate

Sewage treatment results in wastewater being recycled to the environment, but the solids removed from wastewater can also be processed and turned into a nutrient rich fertilizer. Today's primary use of this fertilizer is to restore overworked agricultural soils, but research by the USDA and the USEPA/ERT has now opened the way for use of biosolids to reclaim lands destroyed by mining.

Our Land, Our Legacy: The Resource Conservation and Recovery Act

This is a story about the remarkable results that can occur when we clean up sites in a way that not only protects human health and the environment, but also supports reuse.

Superfund Redevelopment: Realizing Possibilities

Produced by the U.S. EPA Superfund Program, this video depicts redevelopment of formerly contaminated sites that have been cleaned up and put back into productive use. This program is helping to turn areas that were once dangerous into something communities can be proud of. This video concentrates primarily on redeveloping a site in Woburn, Massachusetts. Running time is 12 minutes. Copies of this video can be obtained from Robert Cattell, 703-603-9054 or .

Clandestine Drug Labs—The Problem, The Danger, The Future: Produced by U.S. EPA Environmental Response Team

Clandestine methamphetamine labs have been implicated in fires, explosions, toxic chemical releases, and hazardous waste dumping. Experts anticipate these problems to proliferate as methamphetamine use spreads across the United States. “Cooks” with little or no training use chemicals from local drugstores, equipment from hardware stores, and recipes from the Internet. Cooks may be drug users, or they may be involved with drug cartels. Their main concern is maintaining their supply of methamphetamine, without regard to the safety of their children or neighbors. Labs may be small and mobile, or they may blend in with the surrounding neighborhood, making them hard to locate until a disaster occurs. Teams of trained specialists from the USEPA assist police officers and firefighters in shutting down laboratory operations safely, cleaning up contaminated areas, and disposing of hazardous materials. These response teams are trained to handle unlabeled containers, unknown mixtures of chemicals, and high concentrations of toxic or explosive fumes. This video lists telltale signs of illicit drug lab activities. The video shows precautions to follow when a lab or dump site is discovered, and it gives contact information regarding the Superfund’s response training program. Running time is 25 minutes.

Martin County, Kentucky Coal Waste Spill: Produced by U.S. EPA Environmental Response Team

On October 11, 2000, a coal slurry impoundment in Martin County, KY collapsed, causing a release of 250 million gallons of coal waste into two separate river basins. The spill posed a major threat to the environment, effecting 100 miles of waterways, causing 5 water treatment plants to shut down, and creating a state of emergency in 10 counties. Thirty-six agencies responded, forming a unified command structure to handle the cleanup which involved 540 cleanup personnel. Some of the coal sludge was physically removed by mixing it with lime, loading it onto trucks, and hauling it to earthen impoundments. Settling ponds were also used to allow the heavier portions of the coal slurry to separate from the water phase. Weir dams were employed to filter some of the water and to provide flood control. After the cleanup, the restoration of private properties and temporary impoundments was initiated. Running time is 21 minutes.

Wyoming Bioremediation: Produced by U.S. EPA Environmental Response Team

Bioremediation, a procedure that is widely used in the petroleum industry, is being used to clean the petroleum-contaminated soil at a 25-acre abandoned refinery near the town of Lovell, Wyoming. Bioremediation uses microorganisms to break down petroleum wastes into nontoxic end products. Bioremediation is conducted on-site and is less energy-intensive than conventional methods. The Lovell site is in its third year of treatment. Periodic testing is done to ensure that petroleum contamination levels continue to decrease and that the microorganism populations remain healthy and active. Running time is 8 minutes.

DIVEX: Response and Removal Action: Produced by U.S. EPA Environmental Response Team

This video highlights a unique site consisting of two different locations within Richland County, South Carolina. After a large explosion resulted in the death of Divex’s site operator, the U.S. EPA, working in conjunction with the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, and Firearms, the Department of Defense, the Army Corps of Engineers, and the U.S. Coast Guard Strike Force, determines the extent of contamination at the chemical company’s site. The cleanup personnel perform many dangerous tasks, including identifying and moving scores of unknown volatile chemicals and detonating 40,000 pounds of explosives. Running time is 22 minutes.

Tranguch Gasoline Spill Site: Produced by U.S. EPA Environmental Response Team

Approximately 50,000 gals. of gasoline leaked from underground storage tank in the Hazleton, PA area, producing a vapor threat to about 400 homes from the flow of the gasoline into sanitary sewer lines. In 1993, the PADER found that the gas was migrating through the sewer trench. Sewer vent traps were installed and an underflow drain was constructed to reduce the flow of gasoline in the Black Creek waterway. In 1996, the USEPA/ERT and the USACE developed a computer model to track the flow of the spill and installed soil-vapor extraction systems. A response and cleanup plan was instituted, includuing placing sewer vent traps in all the homes, installing temporary carbon-air filtration systems where necessary, installing soil-vapor recovery systems, and replacement of part of the sewer line. Additional soil-vapor extraction and biosparging was used to reduce the gasoline plume. A community information trailer was set up on the property to serve as a clearinghouse for the residents, with daily and weekly fact sheets and press releases. Running time is 14 minutes.

Summitville Mine: Produced by U.S. EPA Environmental Response Team

At the Summitville Mine site in Colorado, highly contaminated water runs through an abandoned mine shaft. The investigation that is underway focuses on the presence and nature of fractures in the adjacent rock where the water could migrate, leach metals, and eventually contaminate the environment downstream. Engineers at the site believe plugging the shaft can control the contaminant flow leaving the mine while inhibiting the leaching process. In this presentation, the Environmental Response cameras highlight the challenges of solving the environmental problems at this site. Running time is 10 minutes.

Manasota Plating: Produced by U.S. EPA Environmental Response Team

An abandoned electroplating company in Sarasota, Florida was the site for the emergency removal of contaminated soils. Since the water table was so close to the surface, an on-site dewatering operation and water treatment facility was the most cost effective way to treat the 400,000 gallons of contaminated groundwater. During this three year project for the EPA Region IV team, wells were installed to determine groundwater contamination from cyanide, VOCs, and various heavy metals. This video demonstrates the steps taken to install these systems. Running time is 10 minutes.

Kentucky Oil Wells Plugging: Produced by U.S. EPA Environmental Response Team

Seventy years ago the Illinois Basin Oil Fields were abandoned due to declining production and the low price of crude oil. Unfortunately, some of the wells were decommissioned improperly, and now pose a threat to the local groundwater and the environment in general. Region IV and the ERT have stepped in to evaluate the situation and plug the wells. The equipment used to determine the well conditions and the local stratigraphy are detailed and the techniques used to plug the 500-600ft. deep wells are described. Running time is 7 minutes.

Navajo Vats: Produced by U.S. EPA Environmental Response Team

Prior to the U.S. EPA’s ban on toxaphene in 1986, this pesticide was used regularly on the Navajo Nation to treat cattle and sheep. As much as 20,000 gallons of the pesticide were used daily and then discarded in some 250 pit sites, two of which are now the center of bioremediation activities being conducted by U.S. EPA Region IX, the Navajo Superfund Office, and the U.S. EPA/ERT. Running time is 10 minutes.

Environmental Dredging: Produced by U.S. EPA Environmental Response Team

Our lakes, rivers, and bays are part of our precious scenic and recreational natural resources while also comprising a vital component of our transportation system. These aquatic resources also have tremendous economic value through commercial fishing, commercial transport and recreational activities. The USEPA estimates that the bottom sediments in 10% of these waters contain hazardous chemicals from industrial processes, which often contaminate the fish population and threaten the health of the animals and people who eat them. Removing these contaminated sediments by navigational dredging often aggravates the problem. Environmental dredging utilizes special equipment and procedures to remove the sediments with a minimum of impact on the aquatic resource. This is accomplished by controlling the degree to which contaminated sediments are re-suspended in the water, and carefully monitoring the impact of the dredging on the aquatic environment. Running time is 7 minutes.

The Clean Green—Phytoremediation: Produced by U.S. EPA Environmental Response Team

How do you clean up thousands of tons of contaminated soil? Conventional cleanup methods are costly and often ineffective. A newly developing technique called "phytoremediation" takes advantage of the natural abilities of plants to contain and remove toxic materials from soil and groundwater. At the Aberdeen Proving Ground in Maryland, waste pits containing toxic residues threatened the wildlife and water supply in a nearby wetland area. A field-scale pilot project at this site uses poplar trees to contain the toxic materials in a limited area and possibly degrade these materials into nontoxic byproducts. At a former battery manufacturing facility in Trenton, New Jersey, a field of lead-tolerant plants is removing lead from the soil around the outside of the factory building. Residents of the surrounding urban neighborhood police the site, protecting it from intruders. Running time is 15 minutes.

Alabama Oil Burn: Produced by U.S. EPA Environmental Response Team

Mobile Bay, AL, was the scene of a joint United States-Canadian study designed to measure the environmental impact of burning spilled oil as a cleanup technique. The experiment was comprised of a series of test burns of oil spilled into a large open tank. Particulate and gaseous emissions from the burn were measured, and the data was used to assess potential environmental impact. This experiment supported an open ocean burn conducted in Canada during the summer of 1993. Running time is 8 minutes.

Superfund Seniors: Produced by U.S. EPA Environmental Response Team

The learning experiences of 12 students from Washington D.C.’s Duke Ellington School for the Gifted and Talented are chronicled while the group attends a 6-week internship at the U.S. EPA headquarters. Filmed during the summer of 1989, the video illustrates the highlights of the students’ experiences both in the classroom and on field trips to the Coast Guard National Response Center, a Superfund site, a laboratory, and an emergency response team location. Running time is 12 minutes.

Green Pond Oil Spill: Produced by U.S. EPA Environmental Response Team

Approximately 100 yrs. ago a crude oil pipeline with 28 pumping stations ran through northern New Jersey. Although now defunct, over the years oil from the Newfoundland Pumping Station has entered the soil. With the heavy rains of 1998, 120,000 gallons of crude oil broke through the confining layer of the subsurface and threatened the Charlottsburg Reservoir. A subsurface pumping mechanism is being used to interfere with the oil flow to the reservoir and recover enough oil to eliminate any threat to the area, protecting the historic and environmentally sensitive surroundings. Running time is 6 minutes.

Revegetation with Native Plants: Produced by U.S. EPA Environmental Response Team

The clean-up may be complete, but the soils at clean-up sites are now devoid of vegetation. In the past, hydroseeding large areas was the accepted revegetation method. Today, incorporating regional expertise and scientific research, revegetation is done using native plant species, giving better erosion control, longer plant life spans, and greater drought tolerance. Jump-starting an open area with native vegetation keeps invasives out while attracting larger and more diverse populations of wildlife. In turn, the area becomes a richer, self sustaining habitat with each passing year. Native plants are the new standard for revegetation of former hazardous waste sites. Running time is 9 minutes.

Cleanup by the CRV: Produced by U.S. EPA Environmental Response Team

An explosion at an Elizabeth, NJ, site resulted in a 5-year Superfund cleanup effort, where 182 unmarked cylinders were left untouched because of a lack of any safe and legal means for their disposal. A new technology, the Cylinder Recovery Vessel (CRV), successfully cleaned up the site in 3 months, This video depicts the step-by-step cylinder cleanup using the CRV. Running time is 13 minutes.

Drum Site (Matthews, NC): Produced by U.S. EPA Environmental Response Team

In Matthews, NC, EPA Region IV was faced with the formidable task of identification and disposal of 5,000 contaminant-filled drums from an abandoned warehouse. Various wastes were contained in the drums including ethylene glycol, peroxides, acids, and flammable liquids and solids. An on-site laboratory was set up at the small 2-acre site to aid in the characterization of wastes, allowing compatible waste streams to be "bulked" for disposal. Running time is 6 minutes.

Basket Creek: Produced by U.S. EPA Environmental Response Team

During the late 1960s, a ravine in rural woodlands in Douglas County, GA, was used as an illegal dumping area for industrial solvents, paint removers, and other toxic wastes. Contamination at this site was so severe that excavation of the soil was not feasible because of the potential for dangerous levels of fugitive emissions. This video highlights the unique multiphase cleanup of the site, which involved erecting a prefab building over the contaminated area to control and treat toxic vapors released from the soil. Running time is 6 minutes.

Dynamic Workplans & Field Analytics: The Keys to Cost-Effective Site Cleanup: Produced by Tufts University

A number of governmental, academic, and private sector organizations have articulated innovative strategies for performing hazardous site characterization and remediation in a more efficient and cost-effective manner. Certain basic elements are common to all these strategies, and the cost-effectiveness and practicality of this approach has been demonstrated in a number of settings. Running time is 18 minutes.

In Situ Alcohol Flushing for the Remediation of NAPL Source Zones: Produced by the University of Florida

This video describes the goals and results of tests using In Situ Alcohol Flushing as a cost effective means for extracting Non-Aqueous Phase Liquids (NAPLs) from three test sites. Running time is 28 minutes.

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