COLFAX – A recent report by the Louisiana Department of Environmental Quality concluded there is no off-site environmental impact from the operations of the Clean Harbors Colfax facility.
Commissioned by the Louisiana House of Representatives in 2016 as part of House Concurrent Resolution 118, the study of the air, water and soil in and around Colfax was completed on March 16, 2017.
In separately reviewing study data, the Louisiana Department of Health confirmed there is no health hazard associated with Clean Harbors operations in Colfax.
“The LDEQ’s impartial third-party report shows Clean Harbors Colfax is meeting all national and state ambient air quality standards,” said Phil Retallick, senior vice president of compliance and regulatory affairs at Clean Harbors. “That, along with soil and water test results, shows the site poses no harm to the town of Colfax or the surrounding area.”
Environmental officials tested soil, groundwater and air for the presence of chemical compounds of concern reasonably expected to be associated with operations at the Clean Harbors Colfax facility. The hazards tested for included nitrogenous compounds, volatile organic compounds (VOCs), semi volatile organic compounds (SVOC), metals, polychlorinated dibenzodioxins and polychlorinated dibenzofurans (PCDD/PCDF), explosive compounds and perchlorate. For air sampling, officials tested for hydrogen sulfide, carbon dioxide, sulfur dioxide, carbon monoxide, nitrogen dioxide and particulate matter.
The data generated from the soil, water and air testing were compared to available and/or applicable regulatory standards. Soil and groundwater testing were evaluated in accordance with LDEQ’s Risk Evaluation/Corrective Action Program (RECAP). Air data was evaluated using the Louisiana Toxic Air Pollutant Ambient Air Standards and the National Ambient Air Quality Standards. In addition, LDEQ requested the Louisiana Department of Health conduct its own air health assessment of the LDEQ results – which ultimately determined there was no health risk.
Full findings were delivered last week to the Chairman of the House Natural Resources Committee, Rep. Stuart Bishop, and Chairman of the Senate Environmental Committee, Sen. Mike Walsworth. The report was also given to the dialogue committee, formed by HCR 118, as well Rep. Gene Reynolds, author of HCR 118.
Clean Harbors presented the LDEQ findings, along with a third-party toxicologist review, at its semi-monthly community advisory panel on March 28.
“We’re committed to continuing to work with the community, the LDEQ and the legislature as we move forward with additional environmental protection efforts at the site,” Retallick said.