EPA to test groundwater in Leechburg area

March 12, 2013 by  

The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is now working with the Army Corps of Engineers on a project to clean up the nearby BWX waste dump. The clean-up, which will cost $500m and an estimated ten years, consists of removing radiological contaminants from the dump.

At a meeting on February 26 in Leechburg, federal officials met with residents to answer their questions about the testing and other concerns. Residents were interested in the findings of the first round of tests, as well as whether they were in any danger of ingesting contamination, chemical or nuclear. Concerns seem to center on a nuclear waste dump in Parks Township.
In 2011, the EPA ran tests of groundwater in wells and other locations around Leechburg, because of concerns about water quality near the BWX site. Although the agency did not find any contamination of any kind higher than federal limits, the EPA found gaps in the data and suggested more tests were needed.

At the moment, there have been no findings that suggest residents’ health is being endangered, but the EPA and other agencies will continue to monitor the situation. In addition, the EPA plans more water studies this spring and is currently designing these in cooperation with the Corps of Engineers.

The EPA, along with local authorities, might consider working with brochure printers to create material that explains the findings thus far, and what tests are planned for later in 2013. The brochure could also give details of the clean-up efforts at the BWX dump.