Environmental Restoration — Area B Clean up
Area B Assessment Overview
Numerous environmental studies have been conducted at FTD and in the surrounding area to assess and delineate contamination.
In November 1976 an Installation Contamination Assessment of FTD was performed by the Chemical Demilitarization and Installation Restoration office per the direction of the USAEC which was formerly known as the US Army Toxic and Hazardous Materials Agency. In January 1977 the installation assessment report was finalized. There were indications of on-post contamination, with the potential of migration. The USAEC recommended follow-on studies to define the extent of the contamination; however, the HSC requested that an ad hoc committee review special hazards associated with drilling in Area B, and a separate analysis of the significant findings to identify any mitigating factors of contaminant source or migration. The contamination review committee did not support a need for follow-on work. In November 1977 the office of the Surgeon General approved the committee's position.
In June 1981, following the installation assessment, the USEPA Region III conducted a field investigation of uncontrolled hazardous waste sites [preliminary assessment (PA)] in which a site visit and limited interviews were performed. The USEPA report surmised that Area B may have been the disposal area for biological, chemical, radioactive, industrial and munitions wastes. In addition, although buildings in Area A (FTD 01) associated with biological research were decontaminated by the Army, there was a potential for anthrax contamination in some areas. The USEPA report recommended that the State and the USEPA monitor the Army's investigations.
In February 1988 FTD was listed on the Federal Facilities Compliance Docket. During the same year, the Army conducted an environmental audit to determine the existence of or potential for environmental contamination and to assess human health and environmental risks associated with the installation.
In October 1991 Advanced Sciences Inc. performed a preliminary site Inspection (SI) of FTD, using existing sampling and analysis data. The purpose of the report was to score FTD for possible inclusion on the NPL by using the Hazard Ranking System model. Since the site was not adequately sampled, the report recommended further sampling.
In February 1992, elevated TCE concentrations of trichloroflouromethane were detected in an Area B monitoring well being sampled as part of FTD's state landfill permit requirements. In March 1992 FTD met with the US Army Environmental Hygiene Agency (USAEHA) to discuss the elevated levels. Based on this meeting, the USAEHA began a study of the active landfill and Area B that included installation and sampling of monitoring wells. In February 1993 the report was published.
In October 1992 the MDE sampled 21 off-post residential wells adjacent to Area B. Elevated TCE levels were identified in four of the tested wells. Following the discovery of TCE in domestic wells, the Army provided bottled water or connected potentially affected residences to public water. One residence was connected to FTD's drinking water system.
From 1992 through 1993 various investigations were performed to evaluate conditions in Areas A, B, and C and determine if contamination was present. Reports included geologic studies, soil gas surveys, geohydrologic studies, a preliminary SI, and various groundwater assessments.
From 1994 to the present remedial investigations (RIs) were performed to assess the nature and extent of contamination and associated potential human health and ecological risks. The RI was conducted in two parts: Phase I RI and Phase II RI. Field activities associated with the Phase I RI occurred during 1994 and 1995. Sampling and monitoring operations associated with the Phase II RI occurred in 1997, July 1998 and October 2000. Phase II test trench and subsequent geophysical and soil-gas surveys identified the Area B TCE and tetrachloroethylene (PCE) groundwater contamination source in the vicinity of Area B- 11. In June 2000 Area A's RI report was completed. Since the completion of the Phase II sampling, additional follow-on sampling has occurred in both Areas B and C. Area C's RI report was completed in December 2004.
In February 2001, a feasibility study (FS) was performed to assess remedial alternatives for Area A groundwater. In March 2001 the Area A groundwater proposed plan (PP) was finalized. In July 2001 DDs selecting hydraulic containment of building 568 groundwater and no further action (NFA) for seven Area A sites were signed. Subsequent to the DD, long-term monitoring began in May 2002 and has occurred semi-annually. Mission-funded groundwater production wells are providing hydraulic containment for the site.
In January 2002 a former ash disposal area at the Area C WWTP was excavated to remove all visible ash, to the extent practicable, with conventional excavation equipment. Approximately 1,020 cubic yards of overburden, ash and commingled soil were excavated and disposed of at the Area B active landfill.
In August 2004 a multi-year fixed-price PBC was awarded. Sites included in the PBC are FTD-49 (Area B-11), FTD-50 (Area B-2), FTD-51 (Area B-3), FTD-66 (TCE Spill Site, Area A), FTD-68 (Water Towers, Area A), FTD-69 (Area B-6), FTD-70 (Area B-8, B-18, and trenches north of B-8), FTD-71 (Area B-10 and B-10 Grove), and FTD-72 (Area B Groundwater).
In June 2005, the Area C WWTP FS was completed. The PP was finalized in August 2005. A DD implementing institutional controls for the former ash disposal area was signed by the Garrison Commander on Dec. 15, 2005.
In February 2008 a NFA DD for five sites in Area B was signed. Sites FTD 05 (Area B-Grid), FTD 07 (Area B-Ammo), FTD 29 (Area B-Skeet) and FTD 43 (Area B-20 North/South) were closed out under the restoration program with no additional funding requirements.
In December 2007 and March 2009, DDs were signed selecting capping with LUCs for six restoration sites encompassing eight disposal areas. These areas include FTD49 (Area B-11), FTD 50 (Area B-2), FTD 51 (Area B-3), FTD 69 (Area B-6), FTD 70 (Areas B-8, Trenches N of B-8, and B-18), and FTD 71 (Area B-10).
Cleanup Exit Strategy
Fort Detrick's cleanup strategy is to restore Area B to its orginal natural condition.
The PBC requires the contractor to achieve Remedy in Place on all sites. Completing cleanup for these sites will complete the last of FTD's open restoration sites.
The capping remedies at sites FTD 49, 50, 51, 69, 70, and 71 will be complete in 2009. Once in place, LUCs with annual operations/monitoring of the caps and LUCs and five-year reviews will remain in place indefinitely.
The Area B Groundwater site (FTD 72) is currently projected to be completed in fiscal year (FY)14. The site was added to the NPL in April 2009. The Army is currently working with the USEPA and the MDE to develop a work plan to complete the RI/FS for the Area B groundwater. It is anticipated that the work plan will be an essential part of the future Federal Facilities Agreement with the USEPA. Future remedy selection will be based on the outcome of the FS. Potential remedies may include treatment systems for potable wells in use or with connections to public water supplies and chemical oxidation, enhanced biological treatment, and natural attenuation for the aquifer. Long-term monitoring of the site is anticipated and five-year reviews will be needed for 30 years or more beyond the completion date.
The Area A TCE spill site (FTD 66) may be closed out prior to the end of the PBC in 2014. If not, groundwater monitoring and additional five-year reviews will be needed until the site is at RC.
The Area A water towers site (FTD 68) LUCs will remain in place indefinitely unless a soil removal action is undertaken. Annual monitoring and five year reviews will be required as long as the LUCs are in place.
For the Area C WWTP former ash disposal area, FTD-54, annual monitoring and five year reviews for the LUCs will remain in place indefinitely.