PUBLIC HEALTH ASSESSMENT
NIAGARA FALLS, NIAGARA COUNTY, NEW YORK
To evaluate if a site poses an existing or potential hazard to the exposed or potentially exposed population(s), the site conditions are characterized. This site characterization involves a review of sampling data for environmental media (e.g., soil, surface water, groundwater, air) both on- and off-site; an evaluation of the physical conditions of the contaminant sources or physical hazards near the site which may pose an additional health risk to the community or receptor population(s).
Contaminants selected for further evaluation are identified based upon consideration of the following factors:
- Concentrations of contaminant(s) in environmental media;
- Concentrations of contaminant(s) both on- and off-site;
- Field data quality, laboratory data quality, and sample design;
- Comparison of on-site and off-site contaminant concentrations in environmental media with typical background levels;
- Comparison of contaminant concentrations in environmental media both on- and off-site with health assessment comparison values. These comparison values include Environmental Media Evaluation Guides (EMEGs), Cancer Risk Evaluation Guides (CREGs), drinking water standards and other relevant guidelines; and
- Community health concerns.
The On-site Contamination subsection and the Off-site Contamination subsection include discussions of sampling data for environmental media. A listed contaminant does not necessarily mean that it will cause adverse health effects from exposure. If a chemical is selected for further evaluation in one medium, that contaminant will be reported in all media, where it is detected.
A summary of the environmental contamination data collected at the 102nd Street Landfill site is presented in Tables 3 through 11 in Appendix B. Contaminants selected for further evaluation are discussed in the Public Health Implications (Toxicological Evaluation) section of this public health assessment to determine whether exposure to site contaminants is of public health significance.
Contamination from the fill material and chemical wastes at the 102nd Street Landfill have been identified in soils, groundwater, the 100th Street storm sewer, and sediments of the Niagara River. The wastes at the site consist of demolition debris, fly ash, and chemical wastes (see Appendix B, Tables 1 and 2). Other possible sources of contamination at or near the site are Love Canal, Griffon Park, the Belden site, and open sewage disposal into the ditch east of the site.
Many investigations have been conducted at the site by different agencies and the responsible parties. Both Olin and OCC installed wells throughout the site for subsurface explorations between 1973 and 1980. Numerous off-shore sediment investigations were completed between 1976 and 1983. The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (US EPA) conducted a dioxin sampling program in 1985.
Non-aqueous phase liquid, or NAPL, is a liquid waste product. It is a mixture of chemicals which does not readily combine with water and forms a layer of fluid separate from groundwater. The presence of NAPL was surveyed in April of 1987 and additional data were collected in late 1987 (see Appendix B, Tables 3-5). The heavy NAPL (HNAPL), which is denser (i.e., heavier) than water, forms a separate fluid layer below the water table. The HNAPL is believed to be limited to five localized areas within the site (see Appendix A, Figure 3).
|Area 1:||This area has the largest ratio of trichlorobenzenes to tetrachlorobenzenes of all HNAPL samples and an abundance of chlorinated aliphatic hydrocarbons. It has a low density and low viscosity.|
|Area 2:||A sample from this area is characterized by a lack of tetrachlorobenzenes and pentachlorobenzene and by having a low density and high viscosity.|
|Area 3:||This HNAPL has relatively large proportions of dichlorobenzenes and trichlorobenzenes.|
|Area 4:||This area is known to have received wastes. Tetrachloro-benzenes, primarily the 1,2,3,4-isomer, were the predominant chemicals disposed here.|
|Area 5:||This area contains a heterogeneous mixture of chemicals thought to have migrated from several disposal areas.|
On-site surface soil, subsurface soil or fill material has only been analyzed for dioxin. The fill was analyzed for dioxin in April of 1985, and the concentrations of the 2,3,7,8-tetrachloro-dibenzo-p-dioxin isomer ranged from not detected to 0.68 milligrams per kilogram (mg/kg).
Groundwater wells were sampled between February and November, 1987 as part of the remedial investigation (RI). Groundwater in the overburden aquifer is primarily contaminated with benzene, chlorobenzenes, chlorotoluenes, hexachlorocyclohexanes, and chlorophenols (see Appendix B, Table 6).
Groundwater in the bedrock was evaluated during past investigations at the site. The concentrations of total organic halogens were comparable to background levels in upgradient wells and none of the individual compounds analyzed for were detected or found.
The bulkhead seeps are groundwater discharges into the Niagara River. Five seeps were identified along the bulkhead in June, 1984 (see Appendix A, Figure 4). These seeps appear to be at the same level as the bottom of the fill. The flow rates were estimated to range from 0.02 to 0.15 gallons per minute (gal/min). Waste chemicals were detected in all of leachate samples (see Appendix B, Table 7); however, the presence of NAPL was not confirmed in any of the seeps.
Groundwater infiltration into the 100th Street Storm Sewer was observed by an interior video inspection. The pipe appears in good shape, but infiltration was occurring at the joints. Visual estimates of this seepage ranged from 2 to 8 gal/min.
The 100th Street storm sewer discharges into the Niagara River. Sediment samples were collected from the sewer pipe in November, 1989. The upper two inches of sewer pipe sediment were not visibly contaminated with NAPL, but the lower two inches had a brownish-black discoloration, indicating possible NAPL contamination (see Appendix B, Table 8). The fluid in the sediments contained some NAPL. Sewer effluent samples were collected in December 1989 (see Appendix B, Table 9). The water was contaminated; however, there was no visual evidence of NAPL.
Sediments at the sewer outfall are discussed under "River Sediments" in the Off-Site Contamination subsection.
The Niagara River receives groundwater discharge from seeps in the bulkhead and storm water discharge from the 100th Street Storm sewer. Site contaminants have been detected in both the sewer effluent and the groundwater seeps, however, there is no analytical data for the Niagara River water near the 102nd Street Landfill.
Sediment samples from the Niagara River were collected between October, 1986 and December, 1987 (see Appendix B, Table 10). Samples were collected as far out as 528 feet from the shoreline and to a depth of five feet. Contamination was limited to River sediments within 300 feet of the shore and does not extend very far past the site boundaries. This sediment contamination is most likely attributable to contaminant discharges in sewer effluent, surface water runoff and soil erosion from the site prior to construction of the bulkhead. Other contaminants may have been transported here from the Love Canal area via the 100th Street storm sewer.
The highest concentrations for both the total organic indicator compounds and mercury were found in a sample collected near the sewer outfall. Most of the contamination was found in the upper 6 inches of sediment.
Off-site surface soils were sampled as far west as the Griffon Park boat launch, north to the LaSalle Expressway fence line and 25 feet past the drainage ditch, to the east (see Appendix B, Table 11). One hundred and thirteen soil samples were collected between October, 1986 and November, 1987. Contaminant concentrations were highest along the site boundaries and decreased with distance from the site. Contamination along the north side of Buffalo Avenue, near the northwest corner of the site, is attributed to trucks tracking contaminated soils when leaving the site, while the site was still an active landfill. Contaminated soils north of Buffalo Avenue were removed November 1993.
To the north, between the site fence and Buffalo Avenue, dioxins were found in three surface soils samples with concentrations of 2,3,7,8-tetrachlorodibenzo-p-dioxin (2,3,7,8-TCDD) up to 0.005 mg/kg, and total tetrachlorodibenzo-p-dioxin concentrations up to 0.030 mg/kg. This area was then covered with a foot of clean gravel to prevent direct contact exposure. Mercury analysis of samples taken in this same area showed concentrations up to 9.2 mg/kg. Mercury was detected in waste samples and in surface soils at concentrations up to 4.76 mg/kg in Griffon Park.
The preparation of this public health assessment relies on the information provided in the referenced documents. Adequate quality assurance and quality control (QA/QC) procedures were followed for the recent investigations. Chain of custody, laboratory procedures and data reporting appear to be consistent with accepted US EPA or State of New York procedures. The validity of the analysis and conclusions drawn for this public health assessment is determined by the availability and reliability of the referenced information.
Site access is currently restricted by fencing on three sides of the site and warning signs have also been posted. The Niagara River forms the southern site boundary. Other than water hazards associated with the Niagara River there are no other physical hazards at this site. Historically, it is unknown what, if any, physical hazards were present at the site. During site operations, there was fencing on the western border of the site and along Buffalo Avenue.
To identify other facilities that could contribute to site-related contaminants in groundwater, surface water, soil and/or air at or near the 102nd Street Landfill, NYS DOH searched the Toxic Chemical Release Inventory (TRI) data for 1989. The TRI has been developed by the US EPA from chemical release (air, water, soil) information provided by certain industries that are required to report contaminant emissions and releases on an annual basis.
NYS DOH uses a simple mathematical model to estimate if potential contaminant concentrations resulting from air emissions at a facility may be contributing to community (receptor population) exposures to contaminants at a site. This model uses information about the facility location (distance from the exposed population) and annual air emission data to calculate the radial distance from the facility at which contaminant concentrations in ambient air have been diluted to 1 microgram per cubic meter of air (mcg/m3). NYS DOH then evaluates what portion, if any, of the population living within this distance from the manufacturing facility may also be exposed to contaminants originating at the site.
Carborundum Abrasives Company is 2.4 miles from the site. Two additional facilities that are classified as major emitters were also identified, although they are further than 2.5 miles from the site. The Niacet Corporation is 3.2 miles from the site and the "Energy from Waste" (EFW) facility, currently owned by American Ref-Fuel, is 3.0 miles from the site (see Appendix B, Table 12 for a summary of the contaminant emissions from these facilities).
Based on TRI data and air emissions modeling, air emissions from one of the TRI facilities were found to exceed a screening value of 1 microgram per cubic meter (mcg/m3). Occidental Corporation reported that the "Energy from Waste" facility released 4,560,000 pounds of hydrochloric acid during 1989. This contaminant of concern will be further evaluated in the Public Health Implications section.
This section of the public health assessment (PHA) identifies potential and completed exposure pathways associated with past, present and future use of the site. An exposure pathway is the process by which an individual may be exposed to contaminants originating from a site. An exposure pathway is comprised of five elements: 1) a source of contamination, 2) environmental media and transport mechanisms, 3) a point of exposure, 4) a route of exposure, and 5) a receptor population.
The source of contamination is the source of contaminant release to the environment (any waste disposal area or point of discharge); if the original source is unknown, it is the environmental media (soil, air, biota, water) which are contaminated at the point of exposure. Environmental media and transport mechanisms "carry" contaminants from the source to points where human exposure may occur. The exposure point is a location where actual or potential human contact with a contaminated medium may occur. The route of exposure is the manner in which a contaminant actually enters or contacts the body (i.e., ingestion, inhalation, dermal adsorption). The receptor population is the persons who are exposed or may be exposed to contaminants at a point of exposure.
An exposure pathway is categorized as a completed or potential exposure pathway. Completed pathways exist when all five elements of the exposure pathway exist and that exposure to a contaminant has occurred in the past, is currently occurring, or will occur in the future. Potential exposure pathways exist when any one of the five elements comprising an exposure pathway is missing. Potential pathways indicate that exposure to a contaminant could have occurred in the past, could be occurring now, or could occur in the future. An exposure pathway can be eliminated if at least one of the five elements has not existed in the past, does not exist in the present, and will never exist in the future. The discussion that follows incorporates only those pathways that are important and relevant to the site.
Niagara River water and sediments are being contaminated by groundwater and sewer effluent discharges from the site. Humans have been and are being exposed to contaminants from this site and others that accumulate in Niagara River or Lake Ontario fish. Surficial soils off-site have been contaminated by surface water run-off, air borne particulates and vehicular tracking. Contaminants may be released during remedial activities and procedures should be in place to minimize this occurrence.
The site itself is fenced and has a vegetated soil cover over the wastes, and interior roads have been installed to further protect the integrity of this cover. As long as this cover remains undisturbed, contaminant transport by fugitive dust emissions and/or by vehicular tracking will not occur.
Ingestion of fish from the Niagara River is a completed exposure pathway to site contaminants. Contaminants that bioaccumulate in fish are being discharged from the 102nd Street Landfill in bulk-head seeps and sewer effluent to the Niagara River. People who catch fish from Lake Ontario or from the Upper Niagara River may consume the fish and it is likely that people are being exposed to site contaminants, although there is no fish data to evaluate the public health significance of these exposures. The 102nd Street Landfill would not be the sole contributor to contamina-tion which may be found in fish, since there are other sources of chemical loading to the Niagara River and the fish move through-out the river system. There are no analytical data for site-specific compounds in fish from the upper Niagara River to assess the contribution of the landfill to fish contamination and human health risk. Based upon PCB data, which is not a chemical found at 102nd Street, the NYS DOH has issued an advisory recommending that no more than one meal of carp be consumed per month and that women of childbearing age and children under 15 consume no fish from this area (see Appendix C).
On-Site Surface Soils
Prior to surface soils on-site being covered with clean material in 1974, it is very likely that they were contaminated. However, there are no analytical data to substantiate this or quantify the degree of contamination. Reportedly, children played on the site prior to it being covered with clean soil. In addition to contaminated soils, waste materials, including NAPL, may have also been present on the surface. This could have been partially attributed to disposal of waste material directly on the ground surface. Any past exposures cannot be evaluated since no analytical data are available. Currently, the surface soils on-site consist of clean soils used to cover the contamination. Furthermore, the site is fenced and access is restricted.
Off-Site Surface Soils
Soils north of Buffalo Avenue were contaminated with chemicals from the site. Residents that lived in these areas were most likely exposed to contaminants through direct contact, incidental ingestion or inhalation of dust particulates. The soils in this area were removed.
Off-site surface soils were contaminated by surface water run-off, vehicular tracking, and dust dispersion prior to the site being covered. The off-site soils can be split into three areas - Griffon Park, areas north of the fence line, and areas east of the fence line. There may be on-going and future exposures to contamination in soils at Griffon Park as well as in soils north and east of the site, by persons living in and visiting the area.
Currently, only the boat launch at Griffon Park, which lies on the western section of the park, away from the 102nd Street Landfill, is being used. At one time, two baseball diamonds in the park were used for baseball games. Therefore, in the past, baseball participants could have been exposed to 102nd Street contaminants that are present in the soil at the baseball diamonds through dermal contact with soil, incidental ingestion and inhalation of dust particulates. Other park visitors could have also been exposed to contaminated surface soils in Griffon Park.
Contaminated soils have been identified in areas north and east of the site. Soils in an area north of the site, between the fence and along Buffalo Avenue, contain dioxins and were subsequently covered with gravel, and the potential for exposure to contaminated soils in this area has been minimized. A partially built house used to be present on the property bordering the landfill to the east and has since burned down, and there are other homes east of the site. Olin currently has control of a house immediately east of the site and plans to demolish it.
Groundwater in the overburden aquifer at the landfill is contaminated. However, there are no public or private wells in the direction of groundwater flow that would be used for potable or other domestic purposes. The only potential exposures to contaminated groundwater would be via direct contact with seep discharges at the bulkhead. Groundwater, downgradient of the site, discharges into the Niagara River.
Contaminated surface water runoff from the site may have discharged to the Niagara River or to the drainage ditch which runs outside of the fence line east of the site. Since there are no analytical data for surface water, any exposure pathways for these media can not be quantitatively evaluated. Persons may be exposed to site contaminants through dermal contact, incidental ingestion, and inhalation while swimming or wading in the Niagara River or by wading in the ditch. However, since there is no beach area, the likelihood of persons swimming or wading is small. Also, it would be expected that contamination downstream of the site would be diluted to the extent that it would be immeasurable and would not pose a threat to pubic health from infrequent exposures.
The Niagara River is a source for municipal water. About 70,000 persons are served by the City of Niagara Falls Water Treatment Plant. Other municipalities on both the United States and Canadian sides of the river use this water as well. However, available analytical data indicate that the public water supplies are not significantly affected by contaminants at the 102nd Street site. A monitoring program at the City of Niagara Falls Water Treatment Plant (CNFWTP) analyzes the finished water on a daily basis and raw water on a weekly basis. Finished water has consistently met drinking water standards since the inception of a monitoring program at the CNFWTP in 1979.
As with the surface water pathways, exposures to contaminated sediments via direct contact could result from swimming or wading along the Niagara River shoreline or by wading in the drainage ditch. The sediments along the shoreline of 102nd Street Landfill in the Niagara River are contaminated; however, due to the limited accessibility of this shoreline, human exposures are not likely to occur. There are no available data to evaluate sediments in the ditch.
Air monitoring performed during the Remedial Investigation did not show any releases of site-related contaminants. However, this monitoring was done to determine if any releases occurred during the investigations, so that they could be minimized. Currently, it is not expected that exposures to contaminants in air is occurring.
In the past, it is unknown what releases of volatile organic compounds or contaminated dust may have occurred during the years of active disposal at the site.
Workers may be exposed to waste material at the site during remediation through direct contact with waste material and groundwater, and inhalation of dust particulates and volatile chemicals. However, a health and safety plan will be developed and followed to minimize worker exposures and those of nearby residents.
The possibility of exposures to contaminated off-site surface soils, sediments, and dust particulates, will be eliminated after the remedy, as outlined in the Record of Decision (ROD), is in place.
Currently, there are no residents in the area north of Buffalo Avenue. The Love Canal Area Revitalization Agency (LCARA) owns this property and plans on converting it to an open area. LCARA has no plans to re-habit this area.
The removal of contaminated soil from this area was completed in November 1993. Therefore, it is unlikely that people will be exposed to site-related contaminants in this area in the future.
Off-site surface soils, sediments and surface waters are contaminated with chemicals at levels of concern for past, present, and future human exposure pathways (see Tables in Appendix B). Contaminants selected for further evaluation are identified with an asterisk in the appropriate tables. An assessment of the toxicological implications of past, present, and future human exposure pathways of concern is presented below. To evaluate the potential health risks from contaminants of concern associated with the 102nd Street Landfill site, the NYS DOH has assessed the risks for cancer and noncancer health effects. The health effects are related to contaminant concentration, exposure pathway, exposure frequency and duration. For additional information on how the NYS DOH determined and qualified health risks applicable to this health assessment, refer to Appendix D.
- Past inhalation, dermal contact, and ingestion exposure to off-site surface soils north and east
of the site.
Off-site surface soils have been contaminated by this site (Table 11). Most residents were evacuated from the area in 1980, but some residents remained. On the north side of the site, along Buffalo Avenue, 2,3,7,8-tetrachlorodibenzo-p-dioxin (TCDD), 1,4-dichlorobenzene, hexachlorobenzene and (alpha, beta, gamma)-hexachlorocyclohexane have been identified. These chemicals cause cancer in laboratory animals exposed to high levels over their lifetimes (ATSDR, 1988; 1989b; 1990a; 1992a). Chemicals that cause cancer in laboratory animals may also increase the risk of cancer in humans who are exposed to lower levels over long periods. Chronic exposure to these chemicals at the highest concentrations found in these off-site surface soils would pose a high increased cancer risk. 1,4-Dichlorobenzene, hexachlorobenzene and (alpha, beta, gamma)-hexachloro-cyclohexane also produce several noncarcinogenic health effects (primarily liver, kidney and neurological effects) at levels several orders of magnitude greater than past exposures from off-site soil. The most common adverse effects associated with exposure to TCDD are dermal toxicity, damage to the liver and immune system, birth defects and reproductive toxicity. Long-term exposure to mercury can lead to damage to the kidneys and nervous system (ATSDR, 1992b). Chemicals that cause effects in humans and/or animals at high levels of exposure may also pose a risk to humans who are exposed to lower levels over long periods of time. Although the risks of noncarcinogenic effects from possible exposures to contaminated soil are not completely understood, the existing data suggest that they would be minimal for 1,4-dichlorobenzene; low for hexachlorobenzene, (alpha, beta, gamma)-hexachloro-cyclohexane and mercury, and could be high for TCDD. However, because the area containing the highest levels of TCDD is now covered with a foot of gravel, exposure and, therefore, health risks from this contaminant are greatly reduced.
Surface soils east of the site contain alpha and beta-hexachlorocyclohexane and mercury at concentrations which would pose a low level of increased risk of adverse health effects from possible exposures to contaminated soil, particularly to persons who may have eaten fruits or vegetables grown in contaminated soil over a long period of time. The health risks from possible exposure to alpha- and beta-hexachlorocyclohexane are reduced because they were detected but only in some soil samples.
- Past potential inhalation, dermal contact, and ingestion exposure to off-site soils at Griffon
Off-site soils in Griffon Park are contaminated with 1,4-dichlorobenzene, (alpha, beta, gamma)-hexachlorocyclohexane and mercury. The toxicological properties of these chemicals have already been discussed (see #1 above). Past potential exposures to these chemicals by Little League baseball participants and other park users at the highest concentrations found in the park's soil would pose a minimal health risk to these individuals. 1,4-Dichlorobenzene and alpha- and beta-hexachlorocyclohexane were detected in only a few of the soil samples.
- Past, present, and future ingestion of contaminated fish from the upper Niagara River and Lake
People eat fish from Lake Ontario and it is likely that people eat fish from the Upper Niagara River. Contaminants that bioaccumulate in fish are being discharged from the 102nd Street Landfill in bulkhead seeps and sewer effluent to the river. Adequate data are not available to assess the toxicological implications of exposure to site contaminants via ingestion of fish.
- Past inhalation, dermal contact, and ingestion exposure to on-site soils and NAPL.
Prior to the installation of a soil cover and fence on all landbound sides at the site in 1974, residents had direct access to the site and could have been exposed to contaminants in on-site soil and NAPL. The concentrations of TCDD (Table 5) and other organic chemicals in NAPL (Tables 3 and 4) are extremely high. Adequate exposure data are not available to assess the toxicological implications of this exposure pathway. However, the data suggest that these contaminants could have posed a public health threat if persons were repeatedly exposed to these materials.
- Present potential and future potential exposure to contaminants in off-site soils via inhalation,
dermal contact, and ingestion.
The area north of Buffalo Avenue is not expected to be re-inhabited in the future and contaminated soil in this area has been removed, eliminating related future exposure pathways.
If Griffon Park were to be actively used again, the increased health risks would remain minimal because the anticipated recreational exposure is intermittent and infrequent as discussed in items 1 and 2 above.
- Potential past, present, and future ingestion, dermal, and inhalation exposure of persons
engaged in recreational activities (fishing, swimming, wading) to contaminated sediments and
groundwater discharged to the Niagara River.
As indicated in Tables 6 and 7, contaminated groundwater from the site is being discharged from bulkhead seeps and the 100th Street storm sewer into the Niagara River. River sediments have been contaminated from these discharges (Tables 9 and 10). There are no known analytical data on the Niagara River water near 102nd Street Landfill. The contaminant concentrations in the groundwater, bulkhead seeps, and storm sewer discharges exceed the drinking water or groundwater standards for many of the chemicals. These standards are primarily to ensure that drinking water is of acceptable quality. In this situation, this water is not used "as is" for drinking water. The nearest public drinking water supply intake is about three miles downstream of the site along the Niagara River. There is a stringent water monitoring program in place for this supply, at the City of Niagara Falls Drinking Water Treatment Plant, in conjunction with another site, the S-Area Landfill, thereby limiting the potential hazards of this route. Monitoring of water leaving the water treatment plant for distribution has been shown to pass New York State drinking water standards since 1979. Across the Niagara River, the City of Niagara Falls, Ontario, Canada, also uses the Niagara River for the source of its municipal water supply. There are other water intakes further downstream on both the American and Canadian sides of the Niagara River. The Niagara River eventually empties into Lake Ontario. The area of the river near 102nd Street does not have a beach or fishing area and so people do not come into direct contact with the discharges. Because people are not coming into contact or ingesting the contaminated groundwater, bulkhead seeps and sewer discharges, adverse health effects are unlikely.
- Future potential inhalation, dermal and ingestion exposure of persons engaged in on-site clean-up activities.
Persons engaged in on-site clean-up (remediation) activities have a potential for exposure by multiple routes to organic chemicals and metal contaminants and could be at increased risk of adverse health effects. Adequate data are not available to assess the toxicological implications of this potential exposure. However, use of proper procedures, appropriate dust suppression methods, and monitoring of ambient air for organic vapors during clean-up would minimize any low level increased risk to workers and nearby residents.
The screening evaluation of the Toxic Chemical Release Inventory identified one industrial facility (Occidental Chemical Corporation) whose emissions of hydrochloric acid could affect ambient air quality in the area around the 102nd Street Landfill site. Hydrogen chloride is a strong irritant which causes eye, nose and throat irritation at exposure levels several orders of magnitude greater than those estimated using the TRI screening model. Chemicals that cause effects in humans and/or animals after high levels of exposure may also pose a risk to humans who are exposed to lower levels over long periods of time. Although the risks of noncarcinogenic effects aren't completely understood, the existing data suggest that they are minimal for hydrogen chloride emissions from the Occidental Chemical Corporation.
There are no health outcome data specific for the 102nd Street Landfill site. The only health studies that have been conducted in this area have been specific to the Love Canal site and includes numerous studies of various health indicators among residents of the Love Canal EDA. NYS DOH is committed to conducting a long-term study of about 10,000 people who lived near the Love Canal Landfill between 1940 and 1978.
- Residents have expressed concern over their exposure to airborne contaminants during the
site's operational years.
There are no analytical data available to evaluate past residential exposures to air contaminants from the site. Furthermore, any follow-up health activities that may be conducted would also have to consider the proximity of this site to contaminant exposures from the Love Canal site.
- Residents of the adjacent Love Canal EDA are concerned about their combined exposures to
chemicals from the 102nd Street and Love Canal sites and the possibility of birth defects in their
children and grandchildren.
Chemical wastes were disposed at the Love Canal site between 1942 and 1954. Disposal activities at the 102nd Street Landfill site occurred between 1948 and 1970. Initial remedial measures at the Love Canal site were initiated in 1978 and remedial measures to control site contamination at the 102nd Street Landfill site began in 1974. Therefore, it is possible that some residents of the Love Canal EDA were exposed to contaminants from both sites.
Several researchers have investigated the health status of residents of the EDA. Numerous studies of various health indicators including fetal deaths, incidence of low birthweight infants, incidence of congenital malformations and growth rates in children have been studied among residents of the Love Canal EDA. NYS DOH has proposed and is committed to conducting a long-term follow-up study of about 10,000 people who lived near the Love Canal landfill between 1940 and 1978. This study will include the study of adverse pregnancy outcomes, including birthweight, incidence of congenital malformations and spontaneous abortions.
- Residents are concerned about dredging of the Little Niagara River Channel.
Sample results indicate that contamination is limited to within 300 feet of the shoreline. This contamination should not interfere with dredging of the main channel.
- The community is concerned about the effectiveness of the chosen remedy.
This will be addressed during the design phase of the remedial action. The proposed remediation plan calls for removal of contaminated off-site soils and contaminated sediments. Excavated soils and sediments will be placed on-site within a circumferential slurry wall and a cap, which will encapsulate the contaminated material. Wells will be installed to extract NAPL from the landfill. The recovered NAPL will be incinerated off-site. A pump-and-treat system will be installed for the purpose of maintaining an inward gradient across the slurry wall. This will promote an inward flow of groundwater, thereby minimizing outward migration of contaminants.
- Residents are concerned about incineration of NAPL and sediments, and the resultant
Sediments are not going to be incinerated. The proposed remedy calls for off-site incineration of NAPL, and should not affect residents around 102nd Street Landfill. Incineration will permanently destroy the organic contaminants. Any incinerator used for this remediation will use state of the art technology, emissions control, and monitoring and will meet all state and federal regulatory requirements. The present state of emission control technology is sufficiently advanced so that incineration will not pose a danger to the public.
- Residents are concerned with the effect of contaminated water and sediments associated with
recreational use of the Niagara River.
The sediment contamination associated with 102nd Street Landfill appears limited to the shoreline area bordering the site. Therefore exposures to 102nd Street chemicals in sediment is not likely to occur for persons using the boat launch facilities at Griffon Park or using the Little Niagara River for recreation. Posting and the limited accessibility of the shoreline along the 102nd Street Landfill should eliminate use of that area.