Gibbstown, N. J. (WTXF) - Residents attended a meeting Thursday night to express concerns over a proposal to cleanup the Hercules Superfund site formerly known as the Gibbstown plant.
“I think this is all just smoke screen,” said one resident.
SkyFOX flew over the land where chemical manufacturing operations contaminated the soil, sediment and ground water.
“The same company that polluted the ground is also the same company that was awarded the federal contract to clean up all their own problems. I find that to be a conflict of interest and I’m not sure about that,” said a resident standing before an applauding crowd. Tonight representatives for the Environmental Protection Agency discussed excavation and treatment to get rid of the contamination starting with the top four feet of soil.
“The chemicals in our water system hitting the water system that could affect a lot of things like people’s health such as cancer,” said resident Lee Campbell. The site included an 80-acre former hydro-peroxide manufacturing facility and four acres where solid waste disposal took place. Linda DiPietro says water is also her main concern.
“The drinking water which they say is leaking in the water table, how far has it gone? They’ve only tested so far. Could it be deeper? Could it have gone into the river and into the creeks within the town,” said DiPietro. Officials say some remediation has already started. It could take up to 10 years to meet the cleanup levels for the project.
“I’m glad they’re trying to clean it up but my question is why is it taking so long? Hercules closed a long time ago,” said DiPietro.
Officials say New Jersey has 115 superfund sites. That’s more than any other state in the country largely because it’s highly industrial and has strict environmental laws according to the EPA.