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AGENCY Texas Commission on Environmental Quality
ISSUE 11/09/2007
ACTION Miscellaneous

Notice of Meeting on December 13, 2007, in Moore County, Texas, Concerning the American Zinc State Superfund Site

The purpose of this meeting is to obtain public input and information concerning the proposed remedy for the American Zinc State Superfund Site (Site), north of Dumas in Moore County, Texas. The executive director of the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality (TCEQ or commission) issues this public notice of a proposed remedy selection for the American Zinc State Superfund Site. In accordance with 30 TAC §335.349(a) and Texas Health and Safety Code, §361.187, the commission shall hold a public meeting regarding the commission's selection of a proposed remedy for the American Zinc State Superfund Site. The statute requires the commission to publish notice of the meeting in the Texas Register and in a newspaper of general circulation in the county in which the facility is located at least 30 days before the date of the public meeting. This notice was also published in the Moore County Press on November 7, 2007.

The public meeting is scheduled for December 13, 2007, 7:00 p.m., Dumas City Hall, Commissioners Chambers, 124 West 6th Street, Dumas, Texas. The public meeting is not a contested case hearing under the Texas Government Code, Chapter 2001.

The Site was proposed for listing on the state registry of Superfund sites in the October 15, 1993, edition of the Texas Register (18 TexReg 7201). The Site is located on F.M. 119 north of Dumas, in Moore County, Texas. The Site was operated as a zinc smelter from the late 1930's until the late 1960's or early 1970's, generating heavy metal waste typical to that process. The Site was originally developed by the Illinois Zinc Company, and then sold to the Peru Mining Company, a Delaware corporation, in September 1939. In March 1943, the Peru Mining Company transferred the Site to the American Zinc Company of Illinois. Between 1943 and 1958, the Site was subject to a lease agreement with the Defense Plant Corporation, on behalf of the United States national defense program during World War II. In 1958, the United States conveyed its leasehold interest to the American Zinc, Lead and Smelting Company and American Zinc, Lead and Smelting Company then conveyed their leasehold to American Zinc of Illinois. After the plant was decommissioned in the early 1970s, the American Zinc Company sold the Site to W.R. Pendleton and Clark A. Pendleton through public auction on December 14, 1971. On May 2, 1985, Extraction Systems of America purchased part of the Site through a deed of trust. All improvements, scrap materials and residue located on part of the Site sold were included as part of this deed of trust. On December 8, 1988, Extraction Systems of America, Inc., and Extraction Systems of America Enterprises, Ltd., conveyed a portion of the Site back to W.R. Pendleton and wife, Mozelle Pendleton, in lieu of foreclosure.

On November 19, 1987, the Texas Water Commission (predecessor of TCEQ) District 1 office collected a creek sediment sample, soil sample, and a solid waste composite sample from various locations around the Site. These samples were analyzed for leachable Resource Conservation and Recovery Act metals and for total copper and zinc. Analytical results indicated the presence of lead and cadmium in the leachate as well as high concentrations of zinc and copper.

The Hazard Ranking System (HRS) is a numerically-based screening system that uses information from the previous initial, limited investigations to assess whether a site qualifies for the State or Federal Superfund Program. Sites scoring 28.5 or greater may qualify for the Federal Superfund Program, while sites scoring 5 or greater may qualify for the State Superfund Program. The HRS scoring for the Site was prepared by the TCEQ in March of 1993, and is presented in the report entitled Hazardous Ranking Package. This Site earned a score of 15.21, which qualified the Site for proposal to the State Registry of Superfund Sites on October 15, 1993, and acceptance into the State Superfund Program.

The Remedial Investigation Report dated January 1998, and The Remedial Investigation Addendum Report dated March 1999, includes documentation of the results of the data gathering activities at the source property area, and the adjacent non-source property surface soils and creek bed sediments. The Remedial Investigation is focused on evaluating chemicals of concern (COCs), defined by the TCEQ to be arsenic, cadmium, chromium, lead, silver, and zinc as they occur in potential source areas and as they may occur in potential pathways of migration.

The Preliminary Description of Remedial Alternatives, Feasibility Study, dated February 6, 2006, screened and evaluated remedial alternatives which could be used to remediate the Site. The Feasibility Study report developed five alternatives for remediation of surface and subsurface soils. The commission prepared the Proposed Remedial Action Document on October 11, 2007. This document presents the proposed remedy and justification for how this remedy demonstrates compliance with the relevant cleanup standard.

The recommended remedial alternative is source property containment with stabilization. This remedial alternative was selected based on the fact that vertical migration of COCs to groundwater has not been documented and is not expected. It has been demonstrated that metals have not leached from the soil column, and that groundwater is more than 250 feet below the ground surface at the Site. In addition, source property soil with metal concentrations that is not protective of commercial and industrial practices will be excavated and consolidated on the southeastern portion of the source property area. The consolidated area will then be capped with approximately 12 inches of soil borrowed from the western 1/3 portion of the source property area, where the soil metal concentration is below the protective concentration levels (PCLs) of the Texas Risk Reduction Program rules found in 30 TAC Chapter 350.

The capped area will be graded and vegetated to prevent erosion. A restrictive covenant or deed notice will be placed on the consolidated area to notify the public and property owner(s) that the capped area should not be disturbed and that the property may only be used for commercial and industrial purposes. For non-source properties, the TCEQ recommends the use of institutional controls which includes filing a restrictive covenant to notify the public and property owner(s) that the levels of COCs are not protective of human health and the environment. Under this alternative, if a land owner does not agree to file a restrictive covenant on his or her land, then the non-source areas, where surface soil concentrations exceed residential PCLs, will be deep tilled and treated with a soil amendment to the total depth of impacted soil in order to reduce and stabilize the metals. After treatment, the treated area will be re-sampled to confirm that the metals in the soil are no longer above PCLs. Should confirmation sampling indicate that soil from any treated area still contains metals at levels unprotective of residents and the environment, then that soil will be excavated, and the excavated area backfilled with clean (with concentrations less than the residential PCLs) soils. The excavated soils will be transported to the source property, deposited in the source property consolidation area, capped, and backfilled. The surface of the backfilled area will be contoured to match the surrounding land and seeded. The recommended alternative is the most cost effective, reasonable, and appropriate remedy to address the Site.

All persons desiring to make comments may do so prior to or at the public meeting. All comments submitted prior to the public meeting must be received by 5:00 p.m. on December 11, 2007, and should be sent in writing to Otu Ekpo-Otu, Project Manager, TCEQ, Remediation Division, MC 143, P.O. Box 13087, Austin, Texas 78711-3087, or facsimile at (512) 239-2450. The public comment period for this action will end at the close of the public meeting on December 13, 2007.

A portion of the record for this Site including documents pertinent to the proposed remedy is available for review during regular business hours at the Killgore Memorial Library located at 124 South Bliss Avenue in Dumas, Texas; phone number (806) 935-4941. Copies of the complete public record file may be obtained during business hours at the commission's Records Management Center, Building E, First Floor, Records Customer Service, MC 199, 12100 Park 35 Circle, Austin, Texas 78753, (800) 633-9363 or (512) 239-2920 and additional files may also be obtained from the Project Manager, Otu Ekpo-Otu, at (512) 239-2445. Photocopying of file information is subject to payment of a fee. Parking for persons with disabilities is available on the east side of Building D, convenient to access ramps that are between Buildings D and E.

Information is also available regarding the State Superfund Program at http://www.tceq.state.tx.us/remediation/superfund/index.html.

Persons with disabilities who have special communication or other accommodation needs who are planning to attend the meeting should contact the commission at (800) 633-9363 or (512) 239-1352. Requests should be made as far in advance as possible.

For further information about this site or the public meeting, please contact Kelly Peavler, TCEQ Community Relations, at (800) 633-9363, extension 1352.


Mary R. Risner

Director, Litigation Division

Texas Commission on Environmental Quality

Filed: October 30, 2007

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