2000 CPEO Military List Archive

From: CPEO Moderator <cpeo@cpeo.org>
Date: Thu, 20 Jul 2000 11:40:05 -0700 (PDT)
Reply: cpeo-military
Subject: [CPEO-MEF] Army signs 2 RODs to treat groundwater at APG
[This was posted to the list by Cal Baier-Anderson, 

Hi Lenny-
On behalf of APGSCC, I am sending a press release announcing the happy 
ending to a groundwater contamination controversy that APGSCC has been 
dealing with for 10 years.
The Army has signed the ROD, which will result in the relocation and 
expansion of a water treatment plant that will treat all county wells 
that draw from the solvent- and explosives-contamined Perryman well 
field.  Credit goes to the community, EPA, Harford County officials and 
Maryland Department of the Environment for their vigorous support.
The Army also signed a second ROD for a treatment plant to be built in 
another part of APG to treat a separate VOC plume.  Credit goes largely 
to EPA on this one.  They took a very firm stand.
We find the fact that the Army signed two RODs which will result in the 
construction of two water treatment facilities to be highly significant. 

We would appreciate it if you could post the press release on CPEO 
listserve.  Please feel free to give me a call if you have any 
Cal Baier-Anderson, PhD
University of Maryland, Program in Toxicology
100 N. Greene Street
Baltimore, Maryland, 21201
Office Phone: 410-706-1767
Office Fax: 410-706-6203
Home Office Phone: 410-535-9598
Home Office Fax: 410-535-3754


Press Advisory:  July 20, 2000
For Immediate Release

Cal Baier-Anderson, 
University of Maryland, Baltimore
Program in Toxicology, TAG Advisor 410 535-9598
Susan Rice and Helen M. Richick, APGSCC,

Department of Army Agrees to Treat Groundwater at Aberdeen Proving 
Combined Pressure from EPA, MDE, Harford County and Community Credited 
with Success 

Community Water Supply to be Protected by Treatment Plant Expansion

Army, APG, and EPA officials recently signed two Record of Decisions 
(RODs) to treat two separate, significant plumes of groundwater 
contamination at Aberdeen Proving Ground, an active Army base situated 
along the Western Shores of the Upper Chesapeake Bay in Maryland.   

For 10 years, the Aberdeen Proving Ground Superfund Citizens Coalition 
(APGSCC) worked with the Aberdeen Proving Ground Installation 
Restoration Program (APG IRP), the EPA, Maryland Department of the 
Environment (MDE) and Harford County, to develop a plan to protect the 
community water supply from solvents and explosives that contaminate the 
aquifer due to past activities at APG. The agreed-upon solution was that 
the Army would build an expanded water treatment facility to treat the 
water pumped from all of the county wells drawing from the contaminated 
Perryman well field.  The Record of Decision, or ROD, the decision 
document that is needed to proceed with the proposed action, was first 
tabled by the Army (specifically the Soldier Biological and Chemical 
Command, Army Materiel Command and Department of the Army) and then 
rejected.  Dr. Cal Baier-Anderson, APGSCC TAG (Technical Assistant 
Grant) Advisor reported, "Given the extent of the solvent plume and the 
consistent detections of explosives in the aquifer, and the fact that 
this plan is the most cost effective remedy, it was shocking that the 
Army would question the need for this treatment plant."

In response to the Army's rejection, APGSCC mounted a letter writing 
campaign.  According to Sue Rice, APGSCC Treasurer, "The EPA took a very 
strong stand in support of the proposed treatment plant. Regional 
Administrator, Mr. Bradley M. Campbell worked at the highest levels of 
the Department of the Army to resolve the issues associated with the ROD 
in order to insure citizens have a safe drinking water supply.  Harford 
County also stood their ground, insisting that the treatment plant was 
needed to guarantee the safety of the drinking water."
This firm response paid off when the Army yielded to the combined 
pressure and signed the ROD. Sue Rice reported, "The Army has always 
resisted treating groundwater.  Since the contamination is underground, 
and therefore invisible, it is easy for them to say 'There is no problem 
as long as the water is not used for drinking.' Well, we do drink the 
water in the Perryman well field, so treating this water to remove 
solvents and explosives was simply the right thing to do."  Perhaps more 
important is that the signing of this ROD is a vindication of the 10 
years of effort and volunteer time that community members have 
contributed to the evaluation of the contamination and the development 
of a solution. 

Second Treatment Plant also to be Built to Treat Contaminated Water in 
Edgewood Area 

The Army, EPA, and MDE also signed a ROD for a groundwater treatment 
plant to be built in Canal Creek, which is in the Edgewood Area of APG, 
to treat an unrelated plume of solvent-contaminated groundwater. This 
was another instance where the Army attempted to stall the cleanup 
process by refusing to sign the ROD.  In this case, the contaminated 
water was once used for drinking, however the wells were shut down by 
the state once the contamination was detected.  In accordance with this 
ROD, the Army must decide if it will use the treated water for drinking 
or if it will treat and dump (discharge the water) it.

The signing of both of these RODs represents a major victory for APGSCC 
and the CERCLA (Superfund) process. It means that the Army now 
recognizes that they are responsible for the groundwater that they 
contaminate.  According to Steven Hirsh, Project Manager for the EPA, 
the total cost of the two treatment systems is $22.5 million dollars. 
APGSCC President, Richard Ochs said, "APGSCC is pleased that the Army 
has agreed to clean up the contaminated groundwater that is a legacy of 
past military activities. When the Army refuses to implement a remedy 
that was developed under CERCLA, it raises doubts on the process. By 
signing these RODs, the Army confirms that through teamwork, APG's IRP, 
the EPA, and the community, correctly identified the right solutions."

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: Re: [CPEO-MEF] Response to UXO Access Controls...........
Next by Date: [CPEO-MEF] Navy's Vieques website
  Prev by Thread: [CPEO-MEF] US Restricts Soldiers in S. Korea
Next by Thread: [CPEO-MEF] Navy's Vieques website

CPEO Lists
Author Index
Date Index
Thread Index