Indian Refining Company

Fact Sheet #13
July 2007

Lawrenceville, Illinois

Background

The former Indian Refining Company/Texaco Refinery facility operated as an active petroleum refinery from the early 1900s until the mid-1990s. Located immediately southeast of Lawrenceville, the 990-acre property is bordered on the south and west by wetlands, agricultural land and residential areas. The Embarras River forms the eastern boundary, and residential areas are located north of the site. A lube oil refinery was located on what is known as Indian Acres on the northeastern portion of the property. The area was later used for waste disposal, including lube oil filter clay sludge, acid sludge, and other wastes. A variety of wastes were found in other areas of the site. The site was investigated by the Illinois EPA and was named to the National Priorities List of Superfund sites in 2000.

In 1996 and 1997, acidic tar-like waste material was removed from several residential properties near Indian Acres. A 2000 residential investigation found no new areas of the waste material. The Remedial Investigation (RI) for the site has been completed except for a small amount of follow-up sampling. Information in the RI from extensive environmental sampling will identify the chemicals of concern on the site and describe the known extent of the waste found. The Human Health Risk Assessment, which is part of the RI, will characterize any potential risk to residents or site workers from completed exposure pathways with site contaminants.

What are the major types of contamination on-site that will need to be cleaned up?

The contamination includes metals, Volatile Organic Compounds (VOCs) and Semi-volatile Organic Compounds (SVOCs). VOCs are man-made chemical compounds that tend to vaporize at normal temperature and pressure - typical of the lighter fuels and gasoline. SVOCs are hydrocarbon compounds related to heavier oil products, which are less mobile in the environment and tend to cling to soils. Examples of metals of concern found on-site are chromium, lead, mercury and arsenic. The main VOC of concern is benzene, and the main SVOC of concern is benzo(a)pyrene. The extent and volume of these contaminants will not be completely known until the remedy begins.

Could any of the contaminants affect off-site drinking water?

After reviewing all of the groundwater testing results, the Agency does not believe that residents near the site should be concerned that their well water would be contaminated by site-related chemicals.

Is there any updated information on the status of the ballpark?

The Illinois EPA met with the Community Advisory Council (CAC) in January and March 2007 and responded to questions about the ballpark. (Members of the CAP include local leaders from several municipalities and the county as well as representatives of area schools, public health and economic development groups.)

Illinois EPA also provided a letter dated February 9th, 2007 to Lawrenceville Mayor Brian Straub explaining the extent of the investigations of the ballpark as well as findings. The Illinois EPA does not see a reason to further investigate the ball park or any reason why the city should not make use of the ball park for children’s ball games.

Have the off-site areas of hydrocarbon contamination been cleaned up?

The three areas along Crackle Street, Hickory and 7th Streets, and the West Side of Route 1 near former Tank Farm D all have hydrocarbon contamination that is more than four feet below the ground surface. The Illinois EPA is currently in the investigation stage and no remedies have begun, but there have been no immediate health threats identified.

Has the Risk Assessment that was part of the Remedial Investigation been completed?

The Risk Assessment is being reviewed by the Illinois EPA and the Illinois Department of Public Health (IDPH) as part of the Remedial Investigation Report. When the review is complete, the Illinois EPA will issue a fact sheet to the contact list describing the potential for risks to the public. We will also hold a public availability session to respond to any questions or concerns.

Once final data gaps for the Remedial Investigation and the Risk Assessment are completed, what steps are going to be taken?

The completion of the Feasibility Study (FS) is the next step in the process. The FS evaluates possible alternative remedies for the site. After FS approval, the Illinois EPA and the U.S. EPA will propose an alternative from the FS known as the Proposed Plan. All alternatives studied, including the one preferred by the Illinois EPA and the U.S. EPA, will be submitted to the public for comment, and a public hearing will be held to discuss the FS.

Will results from the Feasibility Study be made available to the public?

Yes, the Illinois EPA will notify the site contact list about the FS document, and it will be made available to the public along with the Proposed Plan in the Public Information Repository at the Lawrence Library, located at 814 Twelfth St. in Lawrenceville prior to the public hearing.

What developments are expected to occur in 2007 - 2008?

You may expect to see the Feasibility Study move forward and visible progress on the underground pipe removal within all of the six main tank farms.

When will removal of the underground piping system take place?

Illinois EPA expects that Chevron’s consultants will be in the field in late summer or early fall of 2007. The date is not yet set, as the Engineering Evaluation/Cost Analysis (EE/CA) planning document is not yet approved. Chevron has submitted the draft EE/CA and the Illinois EPA has commented on it. Chevron will now make the necessary changes to the document and resubmit it. After Illinois EPA approval, the document is sent to the U.S. EPA for review and comment. Then the EE/CA will be available to the public for a 30-day comment period.

Once pipe removal begins, how will it proceed?

The plan involves removing all materials from the pipes and disposing of the materials according to state and federal regulations and removing the pipes. Upon completion of the removal, there will be a complete evaluation of all soils in the area of the piping removal. Approvals by the Illinois EPA and U.S. EPA are anticipated during the summer of 2007.

Should the public be concerned about exposure to site-related contaminants during the pipe removal?

While contaminated dust could blow off site during the excavation activities, all precautionary measures will be taken to prevent this, including dust suppression. On-site workers would have the greatest health risk, but they will make use of all appropriate personal protective gear, according to Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) Standards. Air monitoring will be required during the work to test for airborne contaminants, and work will be halted if safe levels of contamination are exceeded. Illinois EPA will provide oversight during the work.

For more information, please contact:

Carol L. Fuller
Community Relations Coordinator
Illinois EPA
Office of Community Relations
(217) 524-8807
Greg Ratliff
Project Manager
Illinois EPA
Bureau of Land,
National Priorities Unit
(217) 782-9882