[Federal Register Volume 67, Number 204 (Tuesday, October 22, 2002)]
[Proposed Rules]
[Pages 64846-64852]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Printing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 02-26710]


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ENVIRONMENTAL PROTECTION AGENCY

40 CFR Part 300

[FRL-7396-7]


National Oil and Hazardous Substances Pollution Contingency Plan; 
National Priorities List

AGENCY: Environmental Protection Agency.

ACTION: Notice of intent for partial deletion of the West Virginia 
Ordnance Works Site from the National Priorities List.

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SUMMARY: The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Region III announces 
its intent to delete six areas of the West Virginia Ordnance Works 
(WVOW) National Priorities List (NPL) site from the NPL and requests 
public comment on this action. The areas are the Operable Unit 11 (OU-
11) Sellite Plant, the OU-12 North and South Powerhouses and Vicinity, 
the Environmental Mitigation Area 6 (ENV-6), the Expanded Site 
Investigation 3 (ESI-3) Tract 21, the ESI-5 Refueling Depot, and the 
ESI-9 Main and Outgoing Classification Yards. The NPL constitutes 
Appendix B to the National Oil and Hazardous Substances Pollution 
Contingency Plan (NCP), 40 CFR Part 300, which EPA promulgated pursuant 
to section 105 of the Comprehensive Environmental Response, 
Compensation and Liability Act (CERCLA).
    This proposal for partial deletion pertains only to OU-11, OU-12, 
ENV-6, ESI-3, ESI-5, and ESI-9. The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers 
(USACE), together with EPA, issued no further action Records of 
Decision (RODs) for OU-11 and OU-12. Wetlands were restored at ENV-6 in 
accordance with mitigation agreements, which were approved and signed 
by USACE and the West Virginia Division of Natural Resources (WVDNR). 
USACE and EPA issued no further action Decision Documents for ESIs-3, -
5, and -9, which were concurred upon by the West Virginia Department of 
Environmental Protection (WVDEP). EPA bases its proposal to delete 
these six areas at WVOW on the determination by EPA, USACE, and WVDEP 
that all appropriate actions under CERCLA have been implemented to 
protect human health and the environment at OUs-11 and -12, ENV-6, and 
ESIs-3, -5, and -9.
    This partial deletion pertains only to these areas of the WVOW site 
and does not include any other ESI or any OU. All other ESIs and OUs 
will remain on the NPL, and investigation and response activities will 
continue at those ESIs and OUs.

DATES: EPA will accept comments concerning its proposal for partial 
deletion for thirty (30) days after publication of this document in the 
Federal Register and publication of a notice of availability of this 
document in a newspaper of record.

ADDRESSES: Comments may be submitted to Mr. Jack Potosnak, PE, Remedial 
Project Manager, U.S. EPA, Region III (3HS13), 1650 Arch Street, 
Philadelphia, Pennsylvania 19103-2029, Telephone: (215) 814-3362.
    Information Repositories: Comprehensive information on the WVOW 
site, information specific to this proposed partial deletion, the 
Administrative Record and the Deletion Docket for this partial deletion 
are available for review at the following WVOW site document/
information repositories:


Mason County Public Library, 508 Viand Street, Point Pleasant, WV 
25550, (304) 675-0894, Hours of Operation: Monday through Saturday 10 
a.m.-5 p.m.

[[Page 64847]]

U.S. EPA Region III Library, 1650 Arch Street, Philadelphia, PA 19103-
2029, (215) 814-5254, Hours of Operation: Monday through Friday 8 a.m.-
5p.m.
U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Huntington District, 502 8th Street, 
Huntington, WV 25701, (800) 822-8413 or (304) 529-5388, Hours of 
Operation: Monday through Friday 8 a.m.-4:30 p.m.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Mr. Jack Potosnak, PE, Remedial 
Project Manager, U.S. EPA Region III (3HS13), 1650 Arch Street, 
Philadelphia, PA 19103-2029, (215) 814-3362.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

Table of Contents

I. Introduction
II. NPL Deletion Criteria
III. Deletion Procedures
IV. Basis for Intended Partial Site Deletion

I. Introduction

    The United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Region III 
announces its intent to delete a portion of the West Virginia Ordnance 
Works site (WVOW site) located in Mason County, West Virginia, from the 
National Priorities List (NPL), which constitutes Appendix B of the 
National Oil and Hazardous Substances Pollution Contingency Plan (NCP), 
40 CFR part 300, and requests comments on this proposal. This proposal 
for partial deletion pertains to OU-11, OU-12, ENV-6, ESI-3, ESI-5, and 
ESI-9.
    The WVOW site is located on the east bank of the Ohio River, 
approximately six miles north of Point Pleasant, Mason County, West 
Virginia. Contamination of the WVOW site originated from the operation 
of a trinitrotoluene (TNT) manufacturing facility during World War II. 
Nitroaromatic (explosive) compounds are the primary contaminants of 
concern at the WVOW site.
    The WVOW site, as added to the NPL in 1983 encompassed an entire 
area of approximately 8,323 acres. In 1994, after 11 years of 
investigation and other activities at the WVOW site that helped to 
determine where contamination at the site existed, EPA, USACE and WVDEP 
worked together to clarify the boundary of the WVOW site by developing 
a site boundary map delineating areas of known or suspected 
contamination. This clarification of the site boundary was undertaken 
in accordance with EPA's interpretation of ``facility,'' which was 
defined by Congress in section 101(9)(B) of CERCLA, 42 U.S.C. 
9601(9)(B), as ``any site or area where a hazardous substance has been 
deposited, stored, disposed of, or placed or otherwise come to be 
located * * *'' EPA has routinely explained how site boundaries are 
determined when notifying the public regarding additions to the NPL. 
See, e.g., National Priorities List for Uncontrolled Hazardous Waste 
Sites, 67 FR 56757, 56759, September 5, 2002. The current WVOW site 
boundary, as delineated in the 1994 mapping, encompasses approximately 
2,700 acres.
    All six areas proposed for deletion from the NPL are located within 
the current boundary for the WVOW site. The Clifton F. McClintic 
Wildlife Management Area (MWMA) occupies 2,788 acres of the 1983 site, 
and most of the MWMA is also within the current NPL boundary.

OU-11: Sellite Plant

    In April 1990, a surface and subsurface investigation was 
undertaken at the Sellite Manufacturing Area. The results of this 
investigation indicated that neither nitroaromatic compounds nor 
organic compounds were detected. However, during a July 1990 sampling 
event, 2,4-dinitrotoluene was detected in a well but at a level below 
risk-based concentrations. A focused remedial investigation (RI) was 
conducted at OU-11 from January to March 1994 to verify and expand upon 
the April 1990 investigation.
    One groundwater contaminant (bis(2-ethylhexyl)phthalate [DEHP]) 
found at OU-11 was present at a concentration exceeding the maximum 
contaminant level (MCL); however, according to the risk assessment, the 
risk to human health associated with DEHP was within an acceptable 
limit. In addition, lead was found in groundwater at OU-11 at a 
concentration exceeding EPA's action level; however, contamination was 
detected in only three out of seven monitoring wells and the lead level 
was above the action level for only one unfiltered sample. Filtration 
of this same sample resulted in a lead level below the action level. 
According to the risk assessment, the mean lead level was less than the 
mean background level of lead at the WVOW site and the mean lead level 
was found to correspond to an acceptably low probability that blood 
lead levels of any receptor would exceed a level of concern. For these 
reasons, neither DEHP nor lead were found to be contaminants of concern 
at OU-11.
    After the RI, a risk assessment was performed. For groundwater, the 
site-related risk and hazards were found to be within the acceptable 
limits. For surface soil, aluminum, arsenic, beryllium and manganese 
were determined to be present due to background rather than site-
related activities.
    In 1999, as a removal action, EPA disposed of 10 drums of hazardous 
and non-hazardous waste and excavated and disposed of 25 tons of non-
hazardous waste soil. The drums of waste material disposed of as 
hazardous waste contained material contaminated with caustics or 
corrosives or with lead, likely from waste paints or coatings.
    In May 2000, USACE and EPA issued a ROD for OU-11, which was 
concurred upon by WVDEP, finding that no remedial action was required 
at OU-11; however, the ROD stipulated that annual groundwater 
monitoring would be conducted over a period of 5 years to evaluate the 
trend of the concentrations of DEHP and lead to ensure that they remain 
within an acceptable range. The results of the monitoring thus far 
indicate that MCLs are no longer being exceeded.

OU-12: North and South Powerhouses and Vicinity

    In 1994 and 1995, USACE undertook a removal to demolish both 
powerhouse buildings. An RI was conducted in 1995 at OU-12 to identify 
and evaluate the source, nature, and extent of environmental 
contamination in subsurface soil, groundwater, surface water, and 
sediment. Additional sampling of surface soil was conducted in December 
1997 and November 2000.
    Based on analyses of the samples and a risk assessment, it was 
determined that cancer and non-cancer risks were within acceptable 
levels for all receptors. Iron found in subsurface soil was found 
unlikely to induce adverse effects in receptors exposed to subsurface 
soil. The highest iron ingestion rate for any OU-12 receptor was 
projected to be approximately 10 times less than the dose that is known 
to cause signs of mild toxicity in children who have ingested large 
quantities of supplemental iron tablets and 100 times less than a 
lethal dose. Moreover, the risk assessment deduced that the forms of 
iron in subsurface soil would likely be less toxic than iron found in 
nutritional supplements.
    USACE and EPA issued a ROD in June 2002, which was concurred upon 
by the WVDEP, documenting the conclusion that no contaminants present 
in the soil, sediment, surface water or groundwater at OU-12 pose a 
threat to human health. The ROD also concluded that no remedial action 
was required at OU-12.

ENV-6: Wetlands Mitigation Area

    Investigation in this area did not reveal any contamination in 
connection

[[Page 64848]]

with activities undertaken at WVOW. ENV-6 designates an area where 
wetlands were restored to mitigate for the loss of wetlands elsewhere 
within the WVOW site during remedial activities. In 2000, the wetlands 
restoration was completed, and no further work is required at ENV-6.

ESI-3: Tract 21

    Extensive sampling and risk assessments were undertaken at ESI-3 
and, except for an outdoor asbestos removal, no CERCLA response action 
was necessary. Based on these investigations, on September 28, 2000, 
USACE, EPA and WVDEP executed a Decision Document for ESI-3 stating 
that no further action is necessary to protect human health and the 
environment except for removal of asbestos-containing materials. The 
removal was completed in April 2001.

ESI-5: Refueling Depot

    Based on the results of a geophysical survey, trenching, and soil 
and groundwater investigation, it was determined that ESI-5 does not 
pose an unacceptable risk to human health or the environment. This 
determination is based upon the following findings: (a) Chemicals in 
site soils were detected at background concentrations and/or at 
concentrations which do not present a risk to human health or 
ecological receptors; (b) ecological receptors are unlikely to contact 
subsurface soil; (c) site-related contaminants in the groundwater 
samples were detected at concentrations which do not present a risk to 
human health.
    EPA, WVDEP and USACE executed a Decision Document on September 28, 
2000 finding that no remedial action is required at ESI-5 because 
contaminant concentrations detected in the soil and groundwater do not 
present a significant risk to human health or ecological receptors.

ESI-9: Main and Outgoing Classification Yards

    Environmental studies were conducted at ESI-9 in 1996, which 
included collection and analysis of surface and subsurface soil samples 
and groundwater samples from the main classification yard (MCY), 
surface water and sediment samples from water near the MCY, and 
subsurface soil samples from the outgoing classification yard (OCY). A 
human health risk evaluation was also conducted in 1996 based on 
analytical results of the sampling.
    No unacceptable human health or environmental risks were identified 
for environmental media at the MCY or the OCY based on the risk 
evaluation and a repeat analysis of the risk evaluation. It was 
determined that the only contaminant detected in groundwater underlying 
the OCY is likely attributable to the Red Water Reservoir, which is 
located to the south of ESI-9 and is being addressed as OU-4.
    On July 12, 2001, USACE, EPA and WVDEP issued a Decision Document 
for ESI-9, which found that no further action was necessary. 
Unacceptable human health risks identified for the MCY groundwater were 
shown to be attributed to WVOW background conditions and not to WVOW 
activities. Contaminants at ESI-9, present due to WVOW activities, do 
not present a significant risk to human health and the environment.

II. NPL Deletion Criteria

    This partial deletion of the WVOW site is proposed in accordance 
with 40 CFR 300.425(e) and the Notice of Policy Change: Partial 
Deletion of Sites Listed on the National Priorities List, 60 FR 55446 
(Nov. 1, 1995).
    The NCP establishes the criteria that EPA uses to delete sites from 
the NPL. In accordance with 40 CFR 300.425(e), sites may be deleted 
from the NPL where no further response is appropriate to protect public 
health or the environment. In making such a determination pursuant to 
40 CFR 300.425(e), EPA will consider, in consultation with the State, 
whether any of the following criteria have been met:

Section 300.425(e)(1)(i). Responsible parties or other persons have 
implemented all appropriate response actions required; or
Section 300.425(e)(1)(ii). All appropriate responses under CERCLA have 
been implemented, and no further response action by responsible parties 
is appropriate; or
Section 300.425(e)(1)(iii). The remedial investigation has shown that 
the release poses no significant threat to public health or the 
environment and, therefore, taking of remedial measures is not 
appropriate.

    Deletion of a portion of a site from the NPL does not preclude 
eligibility for subsequent CERCLA actions at the area deleted if future 
site conditions warrant such actions. Section 300.425(e)(3) of the NCP 
provides that CERCLA actions may be taken at sites that have been 
deleted from the NPL. A partial deletion of a site from the NPL does 
not affect or impede EPA's ability to conduct CERCLA response 
activities at areas not deleted and remaining on the NPL. In addition, 
deletion of a portion of a site from the NPL does not affect the 
liability of responsible parties or impede agency efforts to recover 
costs associated with response efforts.

III. Deletion Procedures

    Deletion of a portion of a site from the NPL does not itself 
create, alter, or revoke a person's rights or obligations. The NPL is 
designed primarily for informational purposes and to assist agency 
management. The following procedures were used for the proposed 
deletion of OUs-11 and -12, ENV-6, and ESIs-3, -5, and -9 at the WVOW 
site:
    1. EPA has recommended the partial deletion and USACE has prepared 
the relevant documents.
    2. The State of West Virginia through the West Virginia Department 
of Environmental Protection concur with this partial deletion.
    3. Concurrent with this national Notice of Intent for Partial 
Deletion, a notice has been published in a newspaper of record and has 
been distributed to appropriate federal, state, and local officials, 
and other interested parties. These notices announce a thirty (30) day 
public comment period on the deletion package, which commences on the 
date of publication of this notice in the Federal Register and 
publication of a notice of availability of this notice in a newspaper 
of record.
    4. EPA and USACE have made all relevant documents available at the 
information repositories listed previously.
    This Federal Register document, and a concurrent notice in a 
newspaper of record, announce the initiation of a thirty (30) day 
public comment period and the availability of the Notice of Intent for 
Partial Deletion. The public is asked to comment on EPA's proposal to 
delete OUs-11 and -12, ENV-6, and ESIs-3, -5, and -9 of the WVOW site 
from the NPL. All critical documents needed to evaluate EPA's decision 
are included in the Deletion Docket and are available for review at the 
information repositories.
    Upon completion of the thirty (30) day comment period, EPA will 
evaluate all comments received before issuing the final decision on the 
partial deletion. EPA will prepare a Responsiveness Summary for 
comments received during the public comment period and will address 
concerns presented in the comments. The Responsiveness Summary will be 
made available to the public at the information repositories listed 
previously. Members of the public are encouraged to contact EPA Region 
III to obtain a copy of the Responsiveness Summary. If, after review of 
all public comments, EPA determines that the

[[Page 64849]]

partial deletion from the NPL is appropriate, EPA will publish a final 
notice of partial deletion in the Federal Register. Deletion of the 
areas does not actually occur until the final Notice of Partial 
Deletion is published in the Federal Register.

IV. Basis for Intended Partial Site Deletion

    The following provides EPA's rationale for deletion of OU-11, OU-
12, ENV-6, ESI-3, ESI-5, and ESI-9 from the NPL and EPA's finding that 
the criteria in 40 CFR 300.425(e) are satisfied.

Background

    The WVOW site is located on the east bank of the Ohio River, 
approximately six miles north of Point Pleasant, Mason County, West 
Virginia. The WVOW site, as added to the NPL in 1983, encompassed a 
land mass of approximately 8,323 acres. As explained in section I, 
earlier in this Notice, the NPL boundary was clarified in 1994, and the 
WVOW site now encompasses approximately 2,700 acres. The Clinton F. 
McClintic Wildlife Management Area (MWMA) occupies 2,788 acres of the 
original site, and is mostly included in the current site boundary. 
Contamination of the WVOW site originated from the operation of a 
trinitrotoluene (TNT) manufacturing facility during World War II. 
Nitroaromatic (explosive) compounds are the primary contaminants of 
concern at the WVOW site. To expedite CERCLA response actions at this 
large site, the WVOW site is divided into 13 Operable Units (OUs) and 
10 Expanded Site Investigations (ESIs):

OU-1: TNT Manufacturing Area, Burning Grounds, and Waste Water Process 
Lines
OU-2: Red Water Reservoir
OU-3: Yellow Water Reservoir
OU-4: Groundwater Extraction and Treatment for OUs 2 and 3
OU-5: Pond 13/Wet Well Area
ENV-6: Wetlands Mitigation Area
OU-7: Point Pleasant Landfill
OU-8: TNT Manufacturing Area Soils
OU-9: TNT Manufacturing Area Groundwater
OU-10: South Acids Area and Toluene Storage Areas
OU-11: Sellite Plant
OU-12: North and South Powerhouses
OU-13: Pantasote Plant
ESI-1: Magazine Area
ESI-2: Acid Dock
ESI-3: Tract 21
ESI-4: Red Water Sewer Outfall
ESI-5: Refueling Depot
ESI-6: Motorpool and Maintenance Area
ESI-7: Sewage Treatment Plant Outfall
ESI-8: Dump Site Adjacent to the TNT Manufacturing Area
ESI-9: Classification Yards
ESI-10: Various Areas of Concern

    USACE has been investigating and conducting human health risk 
evaluations and assessments for each OU and ESI separately. Once 
investigations and assessments are complete, USACE and EPA together 
have made CERCLA response action decisions, with the concurrence of 
WVDEP.
    The WVOW was established in 1942 as a government-owned, contractor-
operated plant for the manufacture of TNT from toluene, nitric acid, 
and sulfuric acid. The WVOW plant was operated by the General Defense 
Corporation of New York from October 1942 through August 1945. The 
plant had the capacity to produce 720,000 pounds of TNT each day, 
utilizing 12 manufacturing lines; however, it has been reported that 
only lines 1 through 10 were operated, and the plant never reached full 
capacity.
    The facility was constructed on approximately 5,800 acres, of which 
more than 2,000 acres were used as a safety zone between the plant and 
other properties. The plant includes the 12 TNT manufacturing lines; 
two acid manufacturing areas; two coal-fired power plants; a Sellite 
manufacturing plant; pumping stations; a sewage treatment plant; 100 
concrete TNT storage magazines; and various administrative, shop, and 
housing facilities.
    In 1945, the production of TNT ceased, and shutdown of the WVOW 
plant was initiated. The production of TNT had resulted in soil 
contamination from nitroaromatic compounds in the manufacturing areas, 
process facilities, and wastewater disposal facilities. Partial 
decontamination actions were performed, such as flashing the TNT lines 
and draining and capping the Red and Yellow Water Reservoirs, and the 
property was transferred from the U.S. War Department to the U.S. War 
Assets Administration in late 1946.
    Numerous site visits and investigations beginning in 1947 and 
continuing through the 1950s determined that additional contamination 
not previously identified was present at the site. In addition, several 
tracts of land that had received decontamination certificates were 
determined to be contaminated. Because the site could not be completely 
decontaminated, a portion of the site was not released for private 
ownership and was transferred to the State of West Virginia as a 
wildlife management area in 1949.
    In 1981, a red water seepage was discovered at Pond 13, later 
designated as OU-5. Subsequent investigations led the State of West 
Virginia to nominate the WVOW site for inclusion on the NPL; ultimately 
the WVOW site was ranked as 84th. A memorandum of understanding was 
signed in 1983 between EPA Headquarters and the Department of Defense 
to establish responsibilities for remediating the site. For the 
Department, the U.S. Army Toxic and Hazardous Materials Agency began 
the first remedial investigation and feasibility study in 1984. 
Initially, only two operable units were established, and Records of 
Decision (RODs) and Interagency Agreements (IAGs) were signed to 
address these areas. Later, more operable units were created until the 
current total of thirteen was reached.
    Construction of the OU-1 remedy was completed in 1988 before the 
site was transferred from the U.S. Army Toxic and Hazardous Materials 
Agency to USACE, Baltimore District, in 1991. OU-1 remediation included 
capping of the burning grounds and the 10 TNT manufacturing lines that 
had been operated in the 1940s and excavation and flaming of process 
waste water lines. Construction on OU-2, which included draining and 
capping of the Red and Yellow Water Reservoirs, was completed in 1992 
before the site administration was transferred to USACE, Huntington 
District, where it remains. Portions of OU-2 were later divided into 
OU-3, OU-4, and OU-5 to simplify management. The construction of the 
OU-4 remedy was completed in 1997, and the two groundwater treatment 
plants are currently operational. OU-6 was re-designated as ENV-6, and 
construction of wetlands has been completed. OU-7 and OU-13, the Point 
Pleasant landfill and the Pantasote plant, respectively, have been 
designated by EPA as potentially responsible party sites, and EPA is 
the lead agency for addressing these areas. Buildings were demolished 
and debris removed at OU-11 and OU-12. Asbestos-containing material has 
been removed from ESI-3, which was the only hazard posed on that area. 
An underground storage tank (UST) was removed from ESI-6. Asbestos 
materials and other debris were removed and capped at ESI-8.

OU-11: Sellite Plant

    The former Sellite manufacturing area is centrally located in the 
WVOW site and lies northwest of the former TNT manufacturing area. OU-
11 is situated

[[Page 64850]]

on the south side of County Road 12 (Wadsworth Road), approximately 1.5 
miles southeast of State Route 62. Sellite (sodium sulfite) was 
manufactured at the Sellite Manufacturing Plant from 1942 to 1945 by 
the U.S. Army. Supporting facilities consisted of the soda ash storage 
building and a sulfur storage facility. In addition, a box factory and 
storage facility were located at OU-11.
    During the manufacture of TNT at WVOW, Sellite was used for the 
washing and purification of tri-oil as one of the final steps in 
producing TNT. Sellite was manufactured by combining soda ash and 
sulfur, which involved the use of a sulfur melting pit and a sulfur 
furnace. The materials were combined in two batch tanks within the 
Sellite plant, and the liquor produced was pumped to two Sellite 
storage tanks located southeast of the plant.
    During the initial operation of WVOW, Sellite solution was 
transported from the storage tanks to the TNT Manufacturing Area by 
truck. However, because of the inefficiencies of this operation, a 4-
inch-diameter steel line was installed in 1944 to supply Sellite to the 
washer/flaker houses in the TNT Manufacturing Area, and the trucks were 
taken out of service.
    Since the suspension of TNT manufacturing at WVOW in August of 
1945, and the declaration of the WVOW site as surplus in December of 
1945, the former Sellite Manufacturing Area has had several uses. OU-11 
was initially used by the Mason Furniture Company for the manufacture 
of furniture from 1948 through the mid-1970s. The property was most 
recently leased from the landowner by the West Virginia Mulch Company 
for the manufacture of mulch. Site activities included the receipt of 
raw materials, manufacture and storage of mulch, packaging of mulch, 
and the loading of tractor trailers for transport of packaged mulch. 
These operations ceased in 1996, and the property is currently vacant. 
In 1999, EPA discovered drums of unknown materials on the property. EPA 
removed 10 drums of hazardous and non-hazardous materials and 25 tons 
of contaminated soil.
    A focused remedial investigation (RI) was conducted at OU-11 from 
January to March 1994 to verify and expand the database established in 
the April 1990.
    After the RI, a risk assessment was performed. For groundwater, the 
site-related risk and hazard are within the acceptable limits of the 
background risk and hazard. For surface soil, aluminum, arsenic, 
beryllium and manganese were determined to be present due to background 
rather than site-related activities. Total residential cancer risk and 
noncancer hazard from exposure to groundwater and soil were found to be 
within acceptable limits. On May 9, 2000, USACE and EPA issued a ROD, 
concurred upon by WVDEP, finding that actual or threatened releases of 
hazardous substances from OU-11 were not found to be an imminent and 
substantial or future endangerment to public health and welfare or the 
environment and that no remedial action was required at OU-11. In 
addition, the ROD stipulated that annual groundwater monitoring would 
be conducted over a period of 5 years to evaluate the trend of the 
concentrations of bis(2-ethylhexyl)phthalate and lead to assure that 
they remain within an acceptable range. The monitoring program is 
nearly complete and all results indicate that maximum contaminant 
levels are no longer being exceeded.

OU-12: North and South Powerhouses and Vicinity

    OU-12 encompasses the former North and South Powerhouses. The North 
Powerhouse (NPH) site is located northeast of and adjacent to the Mason 
County Fairgrounds in the northeast part of the administrative/
maintenance area of the WVOW in the upland area above the Ohio River 
floodplain. The South Powerhouse (SPH) site is located in the southwest 
part of the former administrative/maintenance area of the WVOW. It is 
southwest of and adjacent to the Mason County Fairgrounds. Both the NPH 
and SPH sites are on property currently owned by Mason County, West 
Virginia.
    The two powerhouses were operational from 1942 through 1945 in 
support of the manufacture of TNT. They were primarily used for the 
production of low-pressure and high-pressure steam for industrial 
purposes and heating at the WVOW but were also reportedly used as 
standby sources of electrical power. Power-generating equipment was 
removed after WVOW shut down in 1945, and the two areas have had no 
known use since that time. Both powerhouse buildings were removed 
during a removal action carried out by the USACE in 1994 and 1995. Each 
powerhouse had an associated coal storage area and ash disposal area. 
The ash disposal pits were used to dispose of ash from the coal-fired 
boilers and were situated on the east side of each powerhouse. Part of 
the ash pit for the SPH is currently a pond. It is the only pond 
located at OU-12 and is designated as Pond 2.
    An RI was conducted in 1995 at OU-12 to identify and evaluate the 
source, nature, and extent of environmental contamination in subsurface 
soil, groundwater, surface water, and sediment. At the request of EPA 
Region III, additional subsurface soil and sediment samples were 
collected from the former ash pit in December 1997. Samples of the 
various media were collected and analyzed in the vicinity of both the 
NPH and SPH. Initially, surface soil samples were not collected because 
the original surface soil was replaced with clean fill during removal 
of the powerhouse buildings. However, surface soil samples were 
collected in November 2000 in response to concerns raised by WVDEP.
    During the RI, soil samples, groundwater and surface water samples, 
and sediment samples were analyzed for likely contaminants and a risk 
assessment was performed using the outcome of the sampling analysis. 
Cancer risks were found to be within acceptable limits for all 
receptors at OU-12. Exposure to groundwater, surface water, or sediment 
does not pose any site-related risks. Elevated levels of iron were 
found in OU-12 subsurface soils; however, the conclusion of the risk 
assessment was that iron is not expected to induce adverse effects in 
receptors exposed to subsurface soil. On June 14, 2002, USACE and EPA 
issued a ROD for OU-12, which was concurred upon by WVDEP, making the 
finding that no remedial action was necessary at OU-12.

ENV-6: Wetlands Mitigation Area

    ENV-6 is located near the eastern boundary of the McClintic 
Wildlife Management Area along Oldtown Creek, just south of County 
Route 12. The area includes Ponds 21 through 23 and other areas (Pond 6 
and a portion of Pond 17A) that are not areas of environmental concern.
    During remedial activity for OU-1, Pond 16 was drained and could 
not be refilled because the pond dam had been damaged, which resulted 
in loss of wetlands in and around Pond 16. As a separate event, during 
remedial activity for OU-2, Ponds 1 and 2 (which were the Red Water 
Reservoir) were drained and capped, also resulting in loss of wetlands. 
To compensate for these two separate losses of wetlands, USACE and the 
State together decided that it would be more efficient, due to other 
remedial activity ongoing at the WVOW site, to construct a dam at Ponds 
21 through 23 rather than re-construct the Pond 16 dam. USACE performed 
pre-construction testing of the areas proposed to be made into aquatic 
habitat or wetlands to ensure that, when flooded, contaminants in the 
soil (if

[[Page 64851]]

any) would not leach into the wetlands and contaminate the ponds. The 
pre-construction sampling and analysis indicated that the soil was not 
contaminated and could be flooded. USACE provided partial funding to 
the State for a replacement dam and fish lost at Pond 16. Investigation 
in this area did not reveal any concerns about contamination related to 
WVOW activity.

ESI-3: Tract 21

    ESI-3 is bounded on the north by Camp Conley Road, on the south by 
Oldtown Creek, and on the east and west by privately-owned properties. 
Historic records from the operation of WVOW indicate no activities 
conducted at the Tract 21 area, which covers approximately 36 acres. 
However, after the closure of WVOW, disposal of WVOW waste and possibly 
civilian waste may have occurred on approximately 15 acres of Tract 21. 
This area of probable disposal was designated as AOC-16. ESI-3 is now 
privately-owned and includes an agricultural field, a wooded area, and 
a small family cemetery.
    Pre-remedial investigation activities were conducted at ESI-3 in 
1995. Because the current use of the site is agricultural, activities 
such as tilling have disrupted the surface soil. Thus, field 
investigations consisted of sampling and analysis of soil beneath the 
zone of agricultural disruption; the investigations also included 
sampling of groundwater and seep water at Tract 21 and surface water 
and sediment from Oldtown Creek, which borders Tract 21 to the south. 
The samples were analyzed for the presence of possible contaminants. 
The data from these field investigations and analyses were screened to 
evaluate whether the site presented unacceptable risk to human health 
and/or the environment. Subsequent human health risk evaluations were 
performed to assess contaminant levels and pathways for potential risk 
to human receptors, and an ecological risk assessment was performed to 
evaluate contaminant levels and pathways for potential risk to 
ecological receptors.
    Based on the outcome of the evaluations and assessment, EPA, WVDEP, 
and USACE issued a Decision Document on September 28, 2000, finding 
that ESI-3 required an asbestos removal action where the disposal 
activities likely occurred, but otherwise no further CERCLA response 
action. The removal action for potentially friable asbestos-containing 
material on the ground surface at ESI-3 was completed in April 2001.

ESI-5: Refueling Depot

    ESI-5 is a 6.3-acre parcel located northeast of the Sellite 
Manufacturing Area (OU-11) on the north side of County Road 12 
(Wadsworth Road); most of ESI-5 is located within the MWMA. During the 
operation of WVOW, the ESI-5 was used as a gasoline refueling station 
and probably contained an underground storage tank for storing 
gasoline.
    In 1994, an initial investigation was conducted which included a 
geophysical survey and subsurface soil sample collection. Surficial 
soil samples were not collected at ESI-5 because petroleum products 
evaporate over time and, thus, would not remain in surface soils more 
than 50 years after any potential release. The purpose of the 
geophysical survey was to locate and map underground storage tanks, if 
any. In 1997, groundwater samples were collected and analyzed for 
petroleum-related hazardous substances and other contaminants. In 1999, 
a supplemental investigation was undertaken to further investigate 
magnetic anomalies detected in the 1994 geophysical survey and to 
otherwise confirm whether any underground storage tanks existed at ESI-
5. Certain locations within ESI-5 were trenched to physically search 
for underground storage tanks, but none were found.
    On September 28, 2000, USACE, EPA and WVDEP issued a Decision 
Document which concluded that ESI-5 does not pose an unacceptable risk 
to human health or the environment. This conclusion was based on the 
following investigation findings: (a) Chemicals found in ESI-5 soils 
were detected at background concentrations and/or at concentrations 
which do not present a risk to human health or ecological receptors; 
(b) ecological receptors are unlikely to contact subsurface soil; (c) 
site-related contaminants found in groundwater were detected at 
concentrations which do not present a risk to human health.

ESI-9: Main and Outgoing Classification Yards

    From 1942 to 1945, when WVOW was in operation, the Main 
Classification Yard (MCY) and the Outgoing Classification Yard (OCY) 
consisted primarily of railroad sidings where incoming and outgoing 
freight were inventoried. In the mid-1960s, the railroad tracks were 
removed and construction of the Mason County Airport began. The airport 
became operational in 1967.
    The MCY is located at the current Mason County Airport, southwest 
of the location of the former South Powerhouse (OU-12) and outside of 
the MWMA. The Mason County Airport runway and terminal area are located 
on the former MCY railbed.
    Prior to the ESI-9 investigation, the following chemicals were of 
potential concern, based on historic use of the MCY: inorganics, 
volatile and semivolatile organic compounds, pesticides, 
polychlorinated biphenyls, and asbestos. Petroleum products and other 
associated chemicals used by Mason County Airport and chemicals 
associated with agricultural activities conducted at ESI-9 after WVOW 
operations ceased and construction of the airport also may have 
contaminated the MCY.
    The OCY is situated within the MWMA along Potters Creek Road 
(County Road 11), north of the former Red Water Reservoir and adjacent 
to the MWMA boundary. The OCY tracks ran parallel to Potters Creek 
Road. During WVOW operations, the OCY was used to facilitate loading of 
the finished product, TNT, to outgoing freight and had a capacity of 30 
railcars per day. The only structure located in this area during WVOW 
operations was the track scale. The track scale pit has been filled in, 
and the tracks have been removed from the site. The Red Water Reservoir 
groundwater extraction wells, a component of the OU-4 groundwater 
extraction system, are currently located where the OCY used to be. 
Prior to site investigation, the following chemicals were of potential 
concern, based on historic use of the OCY: nitroaromatic compounds, 
inorganics, volatile and semi-volatile organic compounds, pesticides, 
PCBs, and asbestos.
    In 1996, an investigation included collection of surface and 
subsurface soil samples from the MCY, collocated surface water and 
sediment samples from the MCY, groundwater samples from monitoring 
wells in conjunction with the study of the MCY, and subsurface soil 
samples from the OCY. After analysis of the sampling, a human health 
risk evaluation was conducted.
    On July 12, 2001, USACE, EPA and WVDEP issued a Decision Document 
finding that: (a) no unacceptable risks were identified for MCY or OCY 
environmental media based on the human health risk evaluation or repeat 
evaluation; and (b) the only contaminant detected in groundwater 
underlying the OCY is likely attributable to the Red Water Reservoir, 
which is being addressed as OU-4.

Response Actions

    At OU-11 and OU-12, building demolition and debris removal were

[[Page 64852]]

performed to eliminate hazards. Also, at OU-11, a removal action was 
taken to remove unsecured drums and some contaminated soil. At ESI-3, 
an asbestos removal was performed to remove asbestos-containing debris.

Community Involvement

    Public participation activities have been satisfied as required in 
CERCLA Section 113(k), 42 U.S.C. 9613(k), and Section 117, 42 U.S.C. 
9617.

OU-11: Sellite Plant

    A copy of the RI report and the Proposed Plan were placed in the 
public repository at the Mason County Public Library in Point Pleasant, 
West Virginia. Notice of the availability of the documents, the public 
comment period, and the public meeting were published in The Point 
Pleasant Register on April 8, 1999. USACE established a 30-day public 
comment period beginning April 15, 1999 and ending May 15, 1999. A 
public meeting was held on April 15, 1999 at the Army National Guard 
Armory in Point Pleasant, West Virginia to answer any questions 
concerning OU-11 and the selected remedy. Representatives of EPA, 
WVDEP, and USACE were present at the public meeting. No members of the 
public attended the meeting, nor were any comments received during the 
public comment period.

OU-12: North and South Powerhouses and Vicinity

    A copy of the RI report and the Proposed Plan were placed in the 
public repository at the Mason County Public Library in Point Pleasant, 
West Virginia. Notice of the availability of the documents, the public 
comment period, and the public meeting were published in The Point 
Pleasant Register on October 31, 2001. USACE established a public 
comment period beginning November 6, 2001 and ending December 11, 2001. 
A public meeting was held on November 7, 2001 at the Mason County 
Public Library to answer any questions concerning OU-12 and the 
selected remedy. Representatives of EPA, WVDEP, and USACE were present 
at the public meeting. No comments were received during the public 
comment period.

ENV-6: Wetlands Mitigation Area

    Periodic updates on wetland construction at ENV-6 were given during 
the WVOW site Restoration Advisory Board meetings. Because there was no 
environmental investigation, no other public involvement was required. 
The Restoration Advisory Board is a group consisting of USACE, State 
and EPA remedial project managers and interested local participants who 
meet as needed to discuss the ongoing environmental work and plans for 
future work at the WVOW site.

ESI-3: Tract 21

    The ESI-3 Decision Document was released to the public on November 
8, 2000. This document, as well as other documents and information EPA 
relied on or considered in concurring with USACE that no further action 
was necessary at ESI-3, were made available to the public on or before 
November 8, 2000 by placing the documents in the public repository at 
the Mason County Public Library, Point Pleasant, West Virginia. Notice 
of the availability of the Decision Document and supporting documents 
was published in The Point Pleasant Register on November 8, 2000. A 
public comment period was held from November 8, 2000 through December 
19, 2000. A public meeting was held on November 8, 2000, to announce 
the release of the Decision Document and to summarize its conclusions. 
Representatives from EPA, WVDEP, and USACE were present to address any 
questions. No questions or comments on the Decision Document were 
received from the public.

ESI-5: Refueling Depot

    The ESI-5 Decision Document was released to the public on November 
8, 2000. This document as well as other documents and information EPA 
relied on or considered in concurring that no further action was 
necessary at ESI-5 were made available to the public on or before 
November 8, 2000 by placing the documents in the public repository at 
the Mason County Public Library, Point Pleasant, West Virginia. Notice 
of the availability of the Decision Document and supporting documents 
was published in The Point Pleasant Register on November 8, 2000. The 
public comment period was held from November 8, 2000 through December 
19, 2000. A public meeting was held on November 8, 2000, to announce 
the release of the Decision Document and to summarize its conclusions. 
Representatives from EPA, WVDEP, and USACE were present to address any 
questions. No questions or comments on the Decision Document were 
received from the public.

ESI-9: Main and Outgoing Classification Yards

    A copy of the Decision Document was placed in the public repository 
at the Mason County Public Library in Point Pleasant, West Virginia on 
or before November 6, 2001. Notice of the availability of the 
documents, the public comment period, and the public meeting were 
published in The Point Pleasant Register on October 31, 2001. USACE 
established a public comment period beginning November 6, 2001 and 
ending December 11, 2001. A public meeting was held on November 7, 2001 
to answer any questions concerning the Main and Outgoing Classification 
Yards. Representatives of EPA, WVDEP, and USACE were available to the 
public at that meeting held at the Mason County Public Library. No 
comments were received during the public comment period.

Current Status

    Removals at OU-11, OU-12 and ESI-3 and wetlands mitigation at ENV-6 
have been successfully completed. No further response action is planned 
or scheduled for OU-12, ENV-6, ESI-3, ESI-5, or ESI-9. Pursuant to the 
NCP, a five-year review will not need to be performed at any of these 
five areas. Five annual groundwater sampling events at OU-11 have been 
completed; upon completion of the analysis of the last set of samples, 
no further response action is planned or scheduled for OU-11.
    While EPA does not believe that any future response actions will be 
needed at these six areas, if future conditions warrant such action, 
the proposed deletion areas of the WVOW site remain eligible for future 
response actions. Furthermore, this partial deletion does not alter the 
status of any other OUs or ESIs at the WVOW site that are not proposed 
for deletion and remain on the NPL.
    EPA, together with USACE and with concurrence from the State of 
West Virginia, has determined that all appropriate CERCLA response 
actions have been completed at OU-11, OU-12, ENV-6, ESI-3, ESI-5, and 
ESI-9 and protection of human health and the environment has been 
achieved in these areas. Therefore, EPA makes this proposal to delete 
OU-11, OU-12, ENV-6, ESI-3, ESI-5, and ESI-9 of the WVOW site from the 
NPL.

    Dated: September 30, 2002.
Thomas Voltaggio,
Acting Regional Administrator, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, 
Region III.
[FR Doc. 02-26710 Filed 10-21-02; 8:45 am]
BILLING CODE 6560-50-P