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Curcio Scrap Metal (Essay Sample)


Task:Writing a report that gives a background of a selected hazardous waste site. The report focuses on Curcio scrap metal which is a waste site located in New Jersey.The pollutants found in the site,contamination extent and the number of people affected are some of the key areas discussed in the report.


Curcio Scrap Metal
Institutional affiliation

Background Report
The Curcio scrap metal inclusive waste site is located a within a single acre of land located in Bergen county New jersey. The address for the site is 16 Lanza Avenue. The site is located above an aquifer which is a source of water for multiple private and public wells. Two organizations have recycling operations within the site. These organizations include the Curio Scrap Metal, which is more than a half a century old in the area, Cirello Iron & Steel company (CISC). The sites are divided into multiple lots, which include the south, east and west lots. The east and west lots were bought back in the year 1985 and converted from their previous agricultural use. On the other hand, the south lot was purchased six years later to create an aggregate surface area of the site to be 30,000 square feet. It is pertinent to note that drainage from the east lot ends up in a nearby lake. The site has been the subject of investigation by the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection and Energy (NJDEP) on multiple instances.
In the east lot of the site, there are piles of scrap metal at different levels of recycling. The crane that is responsible for sorting these scrap metal is located at the centre of the lot. In the initial investigation that was triggered by a complaint from the public, the site was found to pollute the environment through different ways. First, the dismantling of electrical transformers at the site led to the discharge of an oily fluid that found its way into the drainage. The fluid was found to contain different polychlorinated biphenols (PCB's). These included the Arochlor 1260 and Arochlor 1242, which were founding to be at alarming concentration levels. The investigation recommended for the removal of the contaminated soil, which would be the responsibility of the organizations operating within the site. However, subsequent samples indicated that the contaminated soil was to adequately remove.
In an investigation carried out by United States Environmental Protection Agency in 1984, the soil of the site was found to contain lead, nickel, copper as well as PCB’s. This was an increase in the number of pollutants identified from the site when compared to previous results. Moreover, year later oil associated with the site was traced in a nearby pond. The organizations operating within the site were found to be in bleach with the environment law when they moved contaminated soil around the site.
After a potential risk assessment by USEPA, the site investigation were divided into two phases. The first phase of investigation focused on the implications of the activities at the site to soil contamination and groundwater contamination. The investigations concluded that there was extensive pollution of these areas. Within the first operable unit of the investigation, the issue of contaminated soil was well articulated. On the second operable unit, the aspect of groundwater pollution was well articulated. Moreover, the risk level of cancer which is determined by the Lifetime Excess Cancer Risk (LECR) measure was found to be very high at five to a hundred ratios (Superfund record of decision Curcio Scrap Metal, 1991).
On site contaminations
Some of the onsite soil contaminants include lead, PCB’S, mercury and Trichloroethylene. These contaminants were identified during different and independent investigation process. These investigation processes include USEPA, NJDEP and OSHA. The cleanup proposed by USEPA for the contaminated soil in 1994 was the excavation of the contaminated soil and refill of the area with uncontaminated soil. Moreover, the surface is covered by concrete to prevent runoffs. This was implemented on the east lot of the site.
Ground water contaminants were found to include cadmium, mercury, lead, selenium, as well as, polychlorinated biphenyls. Through biological monitoring of the workers on site, it was possible to determine the onsite implications of the contaminants. The blood lead concentration was found to be higher that the mean of the population indicating an adverse effect o the long term wellbeing of the individual. Contamination on offsite surface water included oil traces and PCB concentration levels higher than normal. Some of the pertinent physical hazards that exist at the site inclu...
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