2000 CPEO Military List Archive

From: Lenny Siegel <lsiegel@cpeo.org>
Date: Thu, 22 Jun 2000 12:41:58 -0700 (PDT)
Reply: cpeo-military
Subject: [CPEO-MEF] Army to sign water treatment ROD at Aberdeen
Submitted by "Cal Baier-Anderson" <cbaie001@umaryland.edu>, technical
consultant to the Abderdenn Proving Group Superfund Citizens Coalition.

Army Agrees to Sign ROD: Community Victory
United Pressure from Citizens, EPA, MDE and County Officials Convinces
Army (Pentagon Level) to Sign ROD to Insure
 Maryland Citizens have Safe Drinking Water!

For more than a year, the Department of the Army (DA) has stalled the
Superfund cleanup process at Aberdeen Proving Ground (APG), and then
refused to sign, a Record of Decision (ROD), which involved building a
water treatment plant for the Perryman Wellfield in Harford County,
Maryland.  Past activities at APG, an active base, have resulted in
significant groundwater contamination of the aquifer that feeds the
Perryman Wellfield, the largest source of groundwater in Harford County,
and a source of drinking water for over 88,000 residents and
businesses.  Two Harford County drinking water wells are already
contaminated with trichloroethylene (TCE), and explosives are routinely
detected in nearby monitoring wells.  APG funded an interim emergency
facility to treat the water wells until the extent of the contamination
was determined.

Response to the DA's decision to reject the ROD was quick and strong. 
APGSCC, local community groups, county and state officials mounted a
letter writing campaign and strongly supported Harford County's efforts
to protect their drinking water.   EPA Region 3 also stood their ground,
and worked at "the highest levels of the Department of the Army to
resolve the issues associated with the ROD."

Yielding to the united front presented by EPA, Maryland Department of
the Environment, Harford County officials and the community, the
Department of the Army contacted EPA on Tuesday, June 13th, and reported
that they would build the Perryman Wellfield Water Treatment Plant. 
This is a victory not only for Harford County, but also for CERCLA
programs at Army bases throughout the country.   Decisions made by local
IR Programs, federal and state regulators, and citizens during the long
remediation process cannot be summarily cast aside by the DA at the last

To a large extent, this problem originated with the lack of active
participation on the part of the DA.  If the DA wants to play a role in
the decision making process, they must participate from the beginning
rather than joining in at the 11th hour.  This not only causes
unnecessary delays in clean-up activities, but also is extremely
frustrating for community members who donate their time for these

The APG IRP and the community have a long history of a good and
productive working relationship, and together we strive to select
remedies that are both protective for the community and cost
effective.   One important point the DA overlooked is the fact that the
ROD proposed by the APG IR Program provides the most cost efficient
means of treating the extensive groundwater contamination in this area
of the base.  

It is our understanding that the Department of the Army strongly
promotes meaningful stakeholder involvement. We urge the higher command
at the Pentagon to take a more active role in the remediation process at
the level of the local command to avoid similar situations from
occurring in the future at APG or at other bases.  


Lenny Siegel
Director, Center for Public Environmental Oversight
c/o PSC, 222B View St., Mountain View, CA 94041
Voice: 650/961-8918 or 650/969-1545
Fax: 650/968-1126

You can find archived listserve messages on the CPEO website at 


If this email has been forwarded to you and you'd like to subscribe, please send a message to: 

T O P I C A  The Email You Want. http://www.topica.com/t/16
Newsletters, Tips and Discussions on Your Favorite Topics

  Prev by Date: [CPEO-MEF] The Army's ITR Process at Aberdeen
Next by Date: Re: [CPEO-MEF] Fences at UXO sites
  Prev by Thread: Re: [CPEO-MEF] The Army's ITR Process at Aberdeen
Next by Thread: [CPEO-MEF] Vieques East?

CPEO Lists
Author Index
Date Index
Thread Index