|Alewife Study Group > government > Sept. 5 2000, EPA press release on W. R. Grace asbestos samples||| Search|
Source of this EPA (Environmental Protection Agency) press release and related information:
www.epa.gov/region01/pr/files/090600.html - link no longer works - info provided for access to source's archives:
Contact: Alice Kaufman, EPA Community Affairs Office, (617) 918-1064 Jim Murphy, EPA Community Involvement Coordinator, (617) 918-1028
For immediate release: September 5, 2000; 00-09-1
EPA TO TEST SOIL FOR ASBESTOS CONTAMINATION
Boston - EPA New England will be testing surface soils for asbestos at the W.R.Grace (Alewife) property and adjacent properties in North Cambridge on September 6, 7, and 8. EPA will take a total of about 50 samples of surface soils from the Grace property, from an adjacent commercial property, and nearby city-owned land. Results are expected within approximately one month.
"Public awareness has certainly been heightened, nationally, in recent months about asbestos- contaminated soils. This sampling will help provide additional answers to citizen's questions about the safety of the Grace property and the various neighboring commercial and recreational parcels," said Mindy Lubber, EPA New England regional administrator.
The agency received letters from neighbors concerned that the Grace plant in Cambridge had used asbestos, and possibly vermiculite, at the facility. As a result, EPA is studying the site and is undertaking a site investigation which will include sampling the properties. The site is located near the Alewife MBTA Red Line Station.
EPA scientists will be wearing protective clothing and air filtering respirators during the sampling. This is a federal job safety requirement that protects field personnel during invasive field activities. The nature of a field investigation job means that employees face an added risk by entering into unknown situations every day.
"We ask that citizens not enter the areas where sampling will be taking place," Mary Ellen Stanton, EPA's site manager called an on-scene coordinator. "For their safety we ask people not to approach the marked-off areas when we're working."
EPA will be consulting with the Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry once the results have been received to determine whether there is a health risk and what the EPA's next steps may be. Final decisions on next steps will be made this fall.
What is now the Grace property has been in industrial or commercial use since the 1800s. Former uses included clay mining operations, a railroad, lumber company, brickyard, an ice cream factory and a chemical company.
Contact the Alewife Study Group, North Cambridge Massachusetts, by email at firstname.lastname@example.org