National Contingency Plan15 criteria for interim remedies, instead of National Contingency
Plan criteria for final remedies, ARAR compliance would not have been an issue.
Response: The Interim Consent Order specifically requires that all work at the site be
consistent with not only the Illinois Contingency Plan but also the National Contingency
Plan. In fact, during negotiation of the Interim Consent Order, the PRPs were equally
insistent with the Illinois EPA that the Interim Consent Order require National Contingency
Plan consistency. The discussion found in response to comment numbers 29 and 30 above
address the remainder of this comment.
Proposed Plan: Content and Process
32. Comment: The Illinois EPA and U.S. EPA made no mention in the Proposed Plan of the
PRPs detailed proposal for a dredging remedy. One proposal was submitted in May 1998 and
the other in February 2001. What is the reason for this omission?
Response: The commenter (the PRPs) is correct that neither of the two documents were
discussed in the final proposed plan. Discussion and note of the May 21, 1998 South Ditch,
Proposed South Ditch Remedial Activities document prepared by ENTACT and presented to
the Illinois EPA by the PRPs was included in earlier drafts of the Proposed Plan and removed
for brevity during editing. It is included in the administrative record for the action. The
February 22, 2001 Scoping Document for the South Ditch Presumptive Remedy, was rejected
by the Illinois EPA for numerous reasons, including its technical inadequacy and the
administrative requirements imposed by U.S. EPA Region 5. The administrative obligations
of U.S. EPA Region 5 ended the development cycle of the February 2001 document and,
while included in the administrative record, its actually usability is minimal.
33. Comment: The conceptual remedy outlined in Alternative 4B is patently inadequate under
both U.S. EPA ROD guidance and the Illinois Contingency Plan. The Proposed Plan is a
conceptual dredge remedy with virtually no detail on the features of the project. The
description fails to describe how this complex dredging project is to be implemented and how
specific water quality and effluent standards will be achieved.
Response: The Proposed Plan meets the abbreviated requirements of the guidance cited by
this commenter earlier (U.S. EPA, Guide to Preparing Superfund Proposed Plans, Records of
Decision and Other Remedy Selection Decision Documents (ROD guidance) OSWER
9200.1-23P) particularly since this is an interim action. A proposed plan is not to provide
detail sufficient to construct a project but rather to summarize the known information on a
threat to human health and the environment and present a conceptual remedy for that threat.
The specific construction details will be developed by the PRPs during the remedial design
process and approved by the Illinois EPA prior to implementation. Until the PRPs conduct
the treatability studies discussed in the Proposed Plan and required by the ROD, the
mechanisms of achieving water quality and effluent standards remain undetermined. The
15 The National Contingency Plan is the short name for the National Oil and Hazardous Substances Contingency
Plan, which is the federal regulation implementing the Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation and
Liability Act (CERCLA).
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