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E-M:/ EPA on Zephyr OIl-Muskegon Cleanup

Enviro-Mich message from asagady@sojourn.com

Legal Contact: Reg Pallesen
                                                   (312) 886-0555 

                                         Technical Contact: Betty Lavis
                                                   (312) 886-7183 

                                         Media Contact: Ginny Narsete
                                                   (312) 886-4359 

            For Immediate Release: February 19, 1998 

            No. 98-OPA053 

            REFINERY SITE 

            U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Region 5 said today
            that a $4.4 million cleanup of the Zephyr Refinery site (Muskegon,
            MI) is now complete. EPA provided $1.3 million of the cleanup funds
            through its Superfund program. The United States Coast Guard
            provided $3.1 million through the Oil Spill Liability Trust Fund. 

            The Michigan state legislature has appropriated $5 million to
            build, and operate a ground-water treatment system to deal with an
            underground oil plume and remove remaining underground pipes at
            the site. Michigan Department of Environmental Quality (MDEQ) will
            continue to monitor the site for potential odor problems. 

            The 70-acre site, at 1222 Holton Rd., was an oil refinery that
            produced gasoline and naphtha from 1931 to 1968. Later, the facility
            was converted to a fuel, fertilizer, and bulk storage tank farm,
            today operates as a fertilizer storage facility only. After the old
            refinery was dismantled in the late 1970's, the extensive piping
            for fuel, water, and utility lines was left buried on the site.
In 1985,
            after a series of oil discharges into the Muskegon River that
            to originate from the site, MDEQ ordered Zephyr to construct a
            ground-water treatment system. In the early 1990's, the company
            filed for bankruptcy, and in 1996, the property tax-reverted to the
            State of Michigan. 

            EPA's cleanup work at the site, in cooperation with MDEQ, began in
            October 1996. Materials removed from the site included: 

                 15 above-ground storage tanks; 
                 80,000 gallons of hazardous or flammable liquids; 
                 43,000 tons of contaminated soil from 13 disposal lagoons;
                 2,330 tons of piping equipment and scrap metal.

            The scrap metal was sent to a Muskegon commercial recycler. A few
            tanks remain at the site; some will be used for the ground-water
            treatment system and some are being used by the fertilizer storage

            During the cleanup, a neighboring business reported foul odors
            coming from the site. To solve the problem, EPA funded a
            comprehensive cleanup and upgrade of the company's ventilation
            system. EPA also addressed nearby residents' complaints about dust
            and odors by watering roads near the site and moving or rescheduling
            work activities, depending on the wind direction. 

            With cleanup complete, EPA intends to work with the State of
            Michigan and local government agencies to investigate the potential
            for redevelopment of this brownfield site. 



            Page maintained by: Jeff Kelley, Office of Public Affairs
            Last Updated: February 19, 1998 
            URL: http://www.epa.gov/Region5/news98/98opa053.htm 

Alex J. Sagady & Associates        Email:  asagady@sojourn.com
Environmental Consulting and Database Systems
PO Box 39  East Lansing, MI  48826-0039  
(517) 332-6971 (voice); (517) 332-8987 (fax)

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