2002 CPEO Military List Archive

From: CPEO Moderator <cpeo@cpeo.org>
Date: 8 Oct 2002 15:07:53 -0000
Reply: cpeo-military
Subject: [CPEO-MEF] Activists say soil on U.S. base is destroyed
Activists say soil on U.S. base is destroyed

by Kim Young-sae
Octorber 08, 2002

Green Korean United, an environmental activist group, said Monday soil
contamination at the U.S. military base in Yongsan, Seoul, is at a
serious level, with thousands of tons of earth "soaked with oil" and
beyond restoration.

The United States Forces Korea said the issue has been recognized and
the soil in question would be removed from the base as soon as funding
is received.

Green Korea said soil samples it took from several locations in Yongsan
Garrison contained petroleum elements that exceeded environmental
standards. In an independent analysis of the soil by Korea Resources
Corp., levels of petroleum hydrocarbons requiring urgent treatment were
found, the group said. At 8,638 milligrams of petroleum elements per
kilogram of sample, the soil from the base exceeds the 5,000 milligrams
per kilogram standard set by the ministry, an official at the Korea
Resources' lab said. Korea Resources is a public corporation.

USFK spokesman Stephen Oertwig said the U.S. military is aware of the
contamination, which was likely caused by diesel and kerosene fuel. The
problem was reportedly discovered during work to renovate soldiers'
quarters and update heating systems. About 60 metric tons of
contaminated soil taken from the grounds of the officers' club near Gate
10 has been removed from the base for treatment, he said. Another 2,000
tons unearthed from near the athletic facilities near Gate 17 awaits
disposal pending U.S. government funding. The new heating system will
use natural gas and geothermal energy, Mr. Oertwig said.

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