************ FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE ***************
NEW EPA STUDY SHOWS CONTAMINATION
AT CAMP BONNEVILLE HAS MIGRATED
Contact: Dvija Michael Bertish, Rosemere Neighborhood Association
EPA Region X (Seattle Office) has published a May 2012 Technical Data Report entitled "Camp Bonneville Expanded Site Inspection, Vancouver WA" (Technical Document Number 11-02-0010), prepared by Ecology and Environment, Inc, Seattle WA.
This report is phase II of a study EPA is conducting on-site to determine the level and pathways of contamination at the site. This study was performed subsequent to a February 2009 petition by the Rosemere Neighborhood Association and Columbia Riverkeeper requesting the site be analyzed under the Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation and Liability Act (CERCLA) to determine possible Superfund status and placement of the site on the National Priorities List. The petition was filed following a litany of cleanup management problems led by the Washington State Department of Ecology, Clark County, and former cleanup Contractor Mike Gage.
The petitioners were also responsible for the 2005 federal designation of the Troutdale Aquifer System (that supplies Clark County with more than 99% of its drinking water) as a protected Sole Source Aquifer due to the vulnerability of local ground water to contamination. Camp Bonneville is situated within the Sole Source Aquifer protected area.
The Camp Bonneville Site Inspection scored above 28.5 points in an internal EPA scoring process, the threshold required to meet Superfund requirements. Next steps include regional EPA management meetings with local and state officials to determine plans on how to address the newly identified contaminant issues, and to discuss the potential of Superfund Status.
Items specified in the May 2012 EPA Site Inspection Report:
1) Perchlorate concentration trends in ground water samples have been variable despite Interim Removal Actions that have occurred. Perchlorate, used in rocket fuel such as in mortars fired at the site, disrupts thyroid gland function, and some scientists suspect that it contributes to cancer. Perchlorate levels remain in excess of state cleanup standards at various monitoring locations. HMX and RDX, additional toxic explosives are also found in the ground water at levels that exceed state standards.
2) Ground water also shows elevated concentrations of 12 metals: barium, chromium, cobalt, copper, lithium, manganese, mercury, nickel, strontium, titanium, vanadium, zinc. Semivolatile organic compounds were also detected.
3) Surface water runoff (stormwater) from the site to water bodies is a migration pathway, and this pathway extends downstream for 15 miles. Local fishing could be impacted.
4) Elevated levels of perchlorate, strontium and Volatile/Semivolatile Organics have been found in sediment samples along the North Fork of Lacamas Creek.
5) Surface water samples show elevated levels of manganese and perchlorate in Lacamas Creek.
6) Soil samples indicate elevated levels of RDX, perchlorate, lead, Volatile/Semivolatile Organic Compounds, Nickel, and other toxics at various site Target Areas, Target Impact Areas, Artillery Positions, Firing Ranges, and Demolition/Landfill areas.
7) A Total of 64 Target/Receptor samples were collected, including 20 ground water samples, 10 surface water samples, 33 sediment samples and one surface soil sample. The sample results show that the contamination at significant concentrations from on-site sources is migrating and has reached these targets/receptors. Targets and receptors of sample locations include wetlands.
9) Perchlorate contamination associated with on-site sources is migrating and has reached North Fork Lacamas Creek and Lacamas Creek within the site boundaries. Perchlorate was detected at elevated concentrations in surface water from the creeks.
10) Analytical results show that contamination continues to impact ground water.
11) Approximately 9,627 people use ground water for drinking water purposes within the 4 mile Target Distance Limit used in this study, including the presence of 3,269 domestic wells. The nearest well is within 1/4 mile of the site.
For more information visit Rosemere Neighborhood Association website at www.rosemerena.org