CLEANUP AT EDISON DRUM SITE, ADVANCING
"TIME'S UP FOR CLEANUP" CAMPAIGN
Responsible Parties Fail
to Address Petroleum Contamination
(05/78) TRENTON -- Department of Environmental Protection
(DEP) Commissioner Bradley M. Campbell today announced the start
of a soil and buried drum cleanup at the KTK Drum site in Edison
Township continuing the state's efforts to improve water quality
along the Raritan River's lower section. The KTK Drum site cleanup
is part of DEP's September 2004 Raritan River initiative, which
mandated specific cleanup work at six contaminated sites.
"This state-funded action puts responsible parties on notice
that 'time's up for cleanup' in New Jersey," said Acting
Governor Richard J. Codey. "We are following through on our
promise to eliminate pollution sources to the Raritan River, a
source of drinking water for thousands of New Jersey residents."
DEP authorized more than $800,000 for the project, with an initial
$286,000 obligated to conduct the interim remedial measures. This
interim cleanup consists of removing buried drums from two areas
on site, and continuing the excavation and disposal of a terra
cotta pipeline and catch basins that still contain oil. DEP will
conduct a full remedial investigation after the interim cleanup
work is completed to determine what additional cleanup work is
"We continue to focus on zero tolerance for cleanup delays
at targeted contaminated sites in order to achieve water quality
improvements along the Raritan River and safeguard the health
of local residents," said Commissioner Campbell. "As
we address contamination from sites on a watershed basis, we need
to speed the pace of cleanup work at sites like this former asphalt
and oil processing facility."
DEP included the KTK Drum site as part of the Raritan River initiative
when it was linked with a petroleum discharge found impacting
a tributary of the waterway. At the start of the initiative, DEP
worked with the Edison Wetlands Association to identify sites
along the Raritan River where cleanup work had lagged for years.
In April 2005, DEP launched a similar region-based effort targeting
10 contaminated sites along the lower Delaware River for faster
"I am encouraged that DEP worked cooperatively with the
township and the Edison Wetlands Association to aggressively identify
and begin cleanup at a source of pollution to the Raritan River,"
said Edison Mayor George Spadoro. "The cleanup efforts go
hand in hand with the township's plans to increase public access
to the Raritan River waterfront for residents to enjoy recreationally."
"It's better to clean up now and break the cycles of pollution
than to waste time with any further delays," said Senator
Barbara Buono. "The appalling evidence of pollution at this
site is staggering, but we need to move ahead to protect our sources
of drinking water."
"I commend Governor Codey and DEP Commissioner Campbell
for cleaning up the KTD Drum Site," said Assemblyman Patrick
Diegnan. "The citizens of Edison and all New Jersey residents
can rest assured that protection of the environment remains a
top priority in the state of New Jersey."
The KTK Drum site work began as an investigation into a discharge
from an unknown source located west of the end of Midvale Road.
The seep consisted of an oily discharge emanating from a slope
in the woods that led to a small creek leading to the Raritan
In September 2004, DEP conducted an emergency removal in the
area of the seep and unearthed an 18-inch terra cotta pipeline
containing oil and sludge. The pipeline was traced 700 feet east
to the KTK Drum site where two caches of buried drums also were
found. The drums appear to contain oil, resin and paint-like materials.
At that time, DEP hired an emergency removal contractor to stop
the oily discharge into the Raritan tributary. Approximately 700
feet of pipeline and surrounding contaminated soil were removed.
DEP expended $270,700 during the removal action. Analytical results
from the drum areas revealed elevated levels of polycyclic aromatic
hyrdrocarbons (PAHs) and polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs).
Upon conducting a deed search of the area, it was found that
the KTK property was once part of a large oil storage facility
dating back to the 1930s. The oil facility encompassed a number
of different adjoining properties, which have since been subdivided.
Also, an asphalt plant operated on the properties from the 1940s
to the 1960s.
DEP issued an enforcement directive to the potential responsible
parties in December 2004. Rimbi Corp., current owner of the KTK
property, and Swan Michigan Oil Co., former owner of the property,
appeared willing to conduct the interim remedial measures, but
the companies failed to sign an Administrative Consent Order to
perform the necessary investigation and cleanup work.
DEP's Raritan River effort also resulted in an agreement this
April for a privately-funded $13.2 million PCB cleanup at the
Hatco Site in Woodbridge Township and preservation of a separate
34-acre parcel to compensate the state for injuries to natural
resources. The settlement with Hatco is another significant step
to reverse damage caused by decades of uncontrolled pollution
to the state's water resources.
In September 2004, DEP's Raritan River initiative initially identified
five sites along the Raritan River with continuing discharges:
Edison Township Landfill, Edgeboro Landfill, ILR Landfill, Hatco
and Rhône-Poulenc/Bayer CropScience.
The Lower Raritan Watershed covers 352 square miles in the central
New Jersey counties of Middlesex, Monmouth, Somerset and Union.
It contains the Raritan River, Green Brook, South River, Lawrence
Brook and Manalapan Brook. Land use is more than 50 percent urban,
with remaining lands wetlands (19.7 percent), forest (17.5 percent),
agriculture, water, and barren land.