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More on Historic Agreement to Clean Up SSFL

September 4th, 2010 · 4 Comments · Santa Susana Field Lab

Christina Walsh of  http://cleanuprocketdyne.org  emailed the following, Friday (8-3) afternoon, in response to the news that California DTSC, and DOE and NASA have agreed “in principle” on the cleanup of the Santa Susana Field Lab in Simi Valley:

“This is a landmark day and the most wonderful news I could possibly hear.  Thank you NASA and DOE and DTSC for agreeing to moving forward in a smart and productive way.  This really is the Norm (Riley, former head of the SSFL cleanup for DTSC, until a little over a year ago – editor) solution, of skipping risk-assessment and going straight to background (what is considered the norm in measurements of various potentially harmful contaminants, and what cleanup is measured against - editor), also skipping years and millions (of dollars), and arriving ontime at 2017.  Thanks for allowing this to finally move forward!” 

For a link to the LA Times story, go to the immediately previous post, which is on this SSFL agreement too.  To read the VC Star story by Teresa Rochester, that appears in the 9-4 paper:  http://www.vcstar.com/news/2010/sep/03/agreement-reached-to-clean-up-portions-of-santa/  To read the Daily News story by Tony Castro that is in the 9-4 paper:  http://www.dailynews.com/breakingnews/ci_15987915

Post by Christina Walsh, Editing by Janna Orkney

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4 Comments so far ↓

  • Janna

    Christina,
    Thank you for the incredible work you have done to get the Santa Susana Field Lab cleaned up! Everyone living close by the SSFL owes you a debt of gratitude!

  • Christina Walsh

    Thank you Janna for keeping the community informed and your continued support. It’s so important that we stick with it now and see it through to the clean-up we all want. Thanks so much for your kind words.

  • Mary Wiesbrock

    Let’s let the truth be told! Give credit where credit’s due!
    Norman Riley, former DTSC project manager of SSFL, first floated the idea of the concept of a cleanup to background way back in July of 2009. DOE and NASA have stated to me that they “were considering” Norman Riley’s concept. Next, he was abruptly fired from the SSFL project. Was Norman Riley’s cleanup concept a reason for his firing way back then?
    Norman Riley deserves thanks for his brilliant cleanup concept which DTSC has now adopted. Thanks goes to Norman for first bringing this background cleanup concept to the table!!! It will facilitate a proper SSFL cleanup in a timely manner!

    Mary Wiesbrock

  • Christina Walsh

    The deadline to get your comments in about these agreements is October 1, 2010
    Friday to Ssfl@Dtsc.ca.gov. I am very disappointed to see this continued
    political effort to generate general support letters/comments. The AIPs as
    written do not solve the issues and frankly with such short-sighted decisions
    like “no in place solutions shall be considered.”
    When Norm suggested this approach more than a year ago, he said “presumptive
    remedies”. That means using proven technologies, as opposed to testing new
    technologies. Phytoremediation through the use of plant species, is not a new
    or emerging science. These are proven technologies that have EPA guidance and
    data supporting these methods which can be used to achieve remediation,
    containment, and sequestering of contaminants. This can mean a significant soil
    volume reduction while protecting the public and the environment while also
    protecting the natural habitats and resources that exist.
    The AIP says truck it away no matter what. Is that smart? Does that make sense
    for the surrounding communities to mindlessly fill trucks? And send them all as
    far away as possible?
    The AIP has no business redefining how waste should be classified. The ISRA
    issue with the cesium stalemate shows us that we cannot have an agreement that
    automatically designates waste as LLRW when we know full well that any soils
    found on NASA property cannot be classified this way because without a nuclear
    license, you can’t classify waste as LLRW. Another built-in money-pit
    idesigned for more stalemates in the agreement that will not result in anything
    but delays and more litigation. We have to comment so that the final AOC
    (administrative order on consent) is enforceable and also accomplishes our goal
    of a safe protective cleanup that makes sense. Can we really afford for more
    political hoops to take priority over the safe and appropriate cleanup solutions
    that are best for all who live near the site?

    This is it, and there will be no do-over on this one. Remember also that this
    agreement only deals with a portion of the site and does not deal with the
    Boeing portion or the million gallons of contaminated groundwater. The FSDF was
    removed 10 years ago to bedrock and new soil brought in. Now, 10 years later
    the new soil has been recontaminated by the groundwater, so this shows us that
    soil removal alone as the AIP suggests, will not result in our problem as
    neighbors of the site, being resolved, and isn’t that what we want? Please ask
    for all reasonable proven technologies just as Dtsc claims to support on their
    website. This cannot be about payback, it has to be about what makes the best
    sense for the future of the surrounding communities as well as the site itself.
    Let’s be smart about this and not destroy what we are trying to save.
    These are really crucial issues. Please consider supporting a combined solution
    that better protects the surrounding communities through erosion control and
    responsible soil removal.
    Let’s make sure this “historic” agreement results in the intended actual cleanup
    that makes sense and is protective for all.
    Join us tomorrow for a special phytotechnology talk with NASA. We can find the
    answers that will work, together through discussion and debate.
    Thanks
    Christina
    http://groups.yahoo.com/group/ssflcag/