Santa Susana cleanup update
Ten years ago, Boeing committed to keep its land at the Santa Susana Field Laboratory (SSFL) as open space and in recent months it entered into a conservation easement with North American Land Trust that guarantees that the 2,400 acres will be kept permanently as open space for wildlife and for the benefit of surrounding communities.
Boeing recently submitted a revised work plan to the Department of Toxic Substances Control (DTSC) to clean up the site to recreational standards, which are in line with the site’s future use as open space. Previously, the cleanup was to be done to residential standards, which is a more exacting requirement, but this is unnecessary since there will not be any property division and development on the site.
DTSC will issue an Environmental Impact Report by year-end that will determine the cleanup levels for each area of the SSFL site, and the importance of the report to West Hills is that the processes greatly differ and these decisions will affect the amount of soil and truck traffic moving through West Hills.
The West Hills Neighborhood Council’s Environment Committee has not taken a position on the revised Boeing cleanup plan.
Boeing, NASA and DOE are nearing the completion of Baseline Air Monitoring Work plan to evaluate baseline concentrations of dust, volatile organic compounds and radionuclides in the vicinity of the SSFL. This information will be used to evaluate what impacts are caused by cleanup activities to the surrounding communities.
In March 2017, an expert panel working with the Los Angeles Region Water Quality Control Board released its report on storm water from the SSFL during this last season, which had the largest rainfall in the past five years. The report provides details about the improvements in treatment systems that the panel developed and that Boeing installed. All of the outfalls were sampled and treated and there were no results that exceeded standards.
These were extraordinary results given the amount of storm water that was experienced. The report can be seen by clicking here.
— Alec Uzemeck, Environment Committee co-chair