Green Innovations

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Monday, July 19, 2010

DEC REPORTS: 15,000 Spills Tackled, 39 Major Cleanups Completed, $21 Million Recovered

Annual Remediation Report Highlights Progress Across New York

The New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) tackled 15,000 spills across the state, completed major cleanups of 39 large-scale contaminated sites and collected nearly $21 million in fines and reimbursements related to cleanups in the 2009-10 fiscal year, according to a report recently released.

DEC's "Environmental Remediation Annual Report" also documents more than 5,000 petroleum and chemical storage facilities that were registered and licensed, expanded cleanups of former manufactured gas plants, and an initiative launched to clean up abandoned underground fuel storage tanks using federal stimulus money. The report covers sites under the agency's Superfund, brownfield, spill, vapor intrusion, manufactured gas plant, and other remedial programs.

Report highlights include:
  • Superfund Sites: Not only were cleanup actions completed at 27 sites, but also remediation progressed at another 123 sites in fiscal 2009-10. To date, New York has completed 1,490 Superfund cleanups, with 878 sites underway.
  • Brownfield Sites: Under this program, which works to encourage private developers to remediate and rehabilitate abandoned industrial sites, 12 major cleanup actions were completed. Another 50+ sites made significant progress, from conducting initial investigations to carrying out interim remedial measures.
  • More than 15,000 spills were addressed, with DEC compelling polluters to pay costs in 97 percent of the cases. (To see a regional breakdown of the Spill Resource Program , visit the DEC website.
  • More than 5,000 petroleum and chemical storage facilities were registered and more than 6,000 inspected. Registrations and inspections are akin to preventive maintenance measures that help DEC stay on top of storage facilities to limit the damage from leaks and spills. To view the Bulk Storage Programs 2009/2010 Progress and Statistics please visit the DEC website. 
  • Stimulus Funds for Cleanups: DEC began to utilize $9.2 million provided by the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act to remediate dozens of leaking underground petroleum storage tanks across the state.
  • DEC collected more than $16 million in reimbursements from parties responsible for contamination at Superfund sites, in addition to oversight costs collected for the administration of other remedial programs.

For more information: Access DEC's searchable database of environmental remediation sites on the website. To locate and map remedial sites in New York through DEC's mapping gateway visit the DEC website.