PUBLIC HEALTH ASSESSMENT
November 15, 1996
Division of Health Assessment and Consultation
AGENCY FOR TOXIC SUBSTANCES AND DISEASE REGISTRY
Department of Health and Human Services
Public Health Service
Anderson Road Landfill (Bloomington) - IND980608186
Bennett Stone Quarry (Bloomington) - IND006418651
Lemon Lane Landfill (Bloomington) - IND980794341
Neal's Dump (Spencer) - IND980794549
Neal's Landfill (Bloomington) - IND980614556
Winston-Thomas Sewage Treatment Plant (Bloomington) - IND981200322
ATSDR PUBLIC HEALTH ASSESSMENT: A NOTE OF EXPLANATION
The Public Health Assessment for Bloomington PCB Sites was prepared by the Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry (ATSDR) pursuant to the Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation, and Liability Act (CERCLA or Superfund) section 104 (i)(6) (42 U.S.C. 9604 [i]), and in accordance with our implementing regulations 42 C.F.R. Part 90. As required by CERCLA section 104 (i)(6)(H), copies of volumes I and II of the assessment were furnished to the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and the State of Indiana.
Volumes I and II were provided to EPA and the Indiana State Department of Health in initial release for data validation. Each document was then revised as necessary and released for a public comment period.
Volume III addresses all public comments and comments from state and federal agencies and revises or appends the previous documents as appropriate. Release of this volume concludes the public health assessment process for this site, unless additional information is obtained by ATSDR which, in the agency's opinion, indicates a need for additional revisions or appendices to the conclusions previously issued.
This Public Health Assessment for Bloomington PCB Sites (PHA) is the Agency for toxic Substances and Disease Registry's (ATSDR) evaluation of the public health impact of six sites in and around Bloomington, Indiana, and the public health considerations for technologies that could be used to remediate the sites. The PHA is a cooperative effort of ATSDR and the Indiana State Department of Health (ISDH). Four of the Bloomington polychlorinated biphenyl (PCB) sites--Bennett Stone Quarry, Lemon Lane Landfill, Neal's Dump, and Neal's Landfill--are on the U. S. Environmental Protection Agency's (EPA) National Priorities List (NPL); Anderson Road Landfill and Winston-Thomas Sewage Treatment Plant are not on the NPL but were included in the PHA as part of ATSDR's Bloomington PCB (Polychlorinated Biphenyls) Project. The project was begun in November 1992 in response to Sen. Richard Lugar (R-IN) and Rep. Frank McCloskey's (D-IN) request for a study of the potential health implications associated with a planned incinerator. A 1985 consent decree signed by Westinghouse Electric Corporation, EPA, the Indiana Department of Environmental Management, the City of Bloomington, and Monroe County identified incineration as the remedial option for the Bloomington sites. See the Introduction in Volume I for additional information about the consent decree. In spring 1994, parties to the consent decree began discussions about other remedial options that might be considered for these six sites.
This PHA represents one of the major components of the project; the other was an expert panel workshop held in Bloomington, Indiana, in September 1993. Proceedings and findings from the workshop are available in the draft report Proceedings of the Expert Panel Workshop To Evaluate the Public Health Implications of the Treatment and Disposal of Polychlorinated Biphenyls-Contaminated Waste. The panel workshop provided a considerable amount of background information for the discussions in Volume II of this PHA.
The fact that there are three volumes of the PHA is unique in ATSDR's experience. However, because of the nature of the Congressional request to ATSDR, several other unique aspects of this effort dictated the need for three volumes.
Typical of most PHAs, Volume I contains an evaluation of past, present, and future health implications based on available environmental and health outcome data and pathways of potential human exposure. The pathways analysis and toxicologic implications for contaminants found in Volume I are for six sites rather than the one or two sites that are more typically the subject of PHAs. The ISDH prepared Volume I, Final Report: Preliminary Data Evaluation and Pathway Analyses Report for Consent Decree PCB Sites, under a cooperative agreement with ATSDR and in accordance with ATSDR procedures and guidelines for developing PHAs (ATSDR - Public Health Assessment Guidance Manual [PHAGM], 1992). Volume I represents a major data gathering and analysis activity that was the first comprehensive review of the six Bloomington PCB sites. The ISDH report was released for public comment in January 1994 and, after public comments were addressed, as a final document in April 1994. ATSDR used the ISDH report to focus its attention on specific exposure pathways that ISDH identified as "potential" or "completed" and as background for reaching its own conclusions and recommendations.
Volume II represents a departure from the standard PHA process, primarily in terms of its focus and format. This departure allows ATSDR to address Congressional concerns more effectively. Thus, Volume II, Public Health Considerations of Remedial Technologies for the Bloomington PCB Sites, summarizes a number of public health considerations that those selecting remedial options for both incineration and non-incineration remedial technologies for PCB wastes must evaluate. ATSDR staff members wrote Volume II and in September 1994 released it for public comment. The findings of the expert panels that met in Bloomington, Indiana, in September 1993 had significant influence on the development of Volume II. Volume II examines public health issues regarding waste characterization, excavation, and transportation and reports community concerns related to site remediation.
The public comment version of Volume II was released in September 1994. In November 1994, ATSDR representatives met with citizens in Bloomington to discuss issues related to Volume II and any other comments that they had about the overall project. Several groups asked that ATSDR also consider and respond to comments that were relevant to Volume I, even though Volume I was considered final. Because of the community interest, ATSDR agreed to review all comments presented. The scope and number of comments dictated that ATSDR develop a separate volume to address all comments.
ATSDR also prepared Volume III of the Public Health Assessment for Bloomington PCB Sites, which is a concluding summary of critical issues and questions raised following the public release of volumes I and II. It provides the bases for the overall conclusions and recommendations the agency reached regarding public health hazards associated with the Bloomington PCB sites under past, present, and future conditions.
Volume III of the Public Health Assessment for Bloomington PCB Sites specifically addresses public comments on the PHA in the following sections:
- III.A. -- A summary of Themes That Run Through the Questions and Comments on the Public Health Assessment for Bloomington PCB Sites, Volume I and Summary Responses That Respond Generally to Those Themes
- III.B. -- Responses to General Public Comments on the Public Health Assessment for Bloomington PCB Sites, Volume I;
- III.C. -- Responses to Specific Public Comments on the Public Health Assessment for Bloomington PCB Sites, Volume I;
- IV.A. -- Responses to Public Comments on the NIRT Sections of the Public Health Assessment for Bloomington PCB Sites, Volume II; and
- IV.B. -- Public Comments on Incineration Sections of the Public Health Assessment for Bloomington PCB Sites, Volume II.
The conclusions and recommendations in Volume III supersede those in previous releases of Volume I and provide a summary of the overall conclusions and recommendations in previous releases of Volume II. If previous editions of volumes I and II contain specific conclusions or recommendations that are no longer valid, we have noted that in Volume III.
TABLE OF CONTENTS
- A. Excavation
B. Material Handling and Storage
C. Transportation of Waste
D. Waste Streams and Residuals
- A. Bioremediation
B. Chemical Dechlorination
C. Soil Washing
D. Solvent Extraction
E. Thermal Desorption
H. General Considerations of NIRTs
I. Public Health Considerations of NIRTs
- A. Summary of Proposed Facility
B. Trial Burn
C. Fugitive Emissions Control
D. Waste Feeds and Emissions
E. Contingency Plans
G. Public Health Considerations of Incineration