The EPA (in partnership with the Portland Harbor Community Advisory Group) will present an overall update on the Portland Harbor Superfund Site that will include an overview of the final site-wide baseline sampling plan that was recently signed with a Pre-Remedial Design group of responsible parties. The presentation will also include a brief overview of early action area work and general community involvement updates.
THE STORY FROM THE NEIGHBORHOOD
(the very short version.)
The Lower 11 miles of the Willamette River from the Steel Bridge to Kelley Point Park is a Superfund Site. The EPA granted a Record of Decision in December, 2016 in the final days of the Obama administration that defined a $1.05 billion dollar cleanup that would take place over the next 13 years.
The Trump Administration appointed Scott Pruitt to head the EPA, and in May of 2017 Pruitt created a Superfund Task Force and advised that the Superfund site in St Johns is one of the top 10 in the nation requiring a priority status. (This is not because Portland is popular, this is because we live on a very toxic stretch of river.) Shortly thereafter, the EPA met with unnamed potentially responsible parties (polluters financially responsible for the cleanup) and renegotiated the baseline testing for the start of the cleanup without informing local stakeholders. As a result, Governor Brown and DEQ wrote letters to the EPA demanding transparency and that the scope of the cleanup not be reduced from the original plan. Other stakeholders joined them in that plea.
Over the holidays, a revised final site-wide baseline sampling plan was signed and this meeting is OUR OPPORTUNITY to hear from the EPA on how this new baseline testing for cleanup has changed from the original scope of work and ask questions about what this cleanup in our community is going to look like.
Please come to this meeting. It's an important one if you're concerned about health and safety in our community or if you're concerned about 13 years of dredging and construction on the water and shorelines.