Clean up Agreement Reached for Lenz Oil Services Site

The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Region 5, the Department of Justice (DOJ) and Illinois reached an agreement with 47 alleged generators of waste involved in cleaning up the Lenz Oil Services Inc. Superfund site near Lemont, Ill.

The settlement, called a "consent decree," requires the parties to pay for and implement one of two cleanup plans selected by EPA in September 1999. A final decision on which plan to implement, as well as the details of that plan, will be made after preliminary design work is complete. Twenty-two of these parties will pay a cash settlement, and the remaining 25 will perform the work. The cleanup effort will cost $8 million to $12.5 million, excluding oversight costs.

EPA has identified more than 3,200 potentially liable parties for this site. Through two previous administrative settlements, more than 600 parties, whose waste contributions were relatively small, paid over $4 million into an EPA special account. These funds are available to reimburse the parties to the consent decree for site work.

The 4-acre site, at the intersection of Jeans Road and Route 83 in unincorporated DuPage County, was a waste oil and solvent recycling and storage facility from the early 1960s until 1985. It also encompasses adjacent properties that are contaminated with hazardous substances, and 1.5 acres of shallow aquifer contamination. The site is about 600 feet northwest of the Des Plaines River, partially within a designated flood plain.

From 1985 to 1989, Illinois EPA conducted a series of actions to address immediate health threats, including removal and disposal of 35 structures and 200 drums, and on-site incineration of 21,000 tons of contaminated soil and 150,000 gallons of liquid.

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