Justice Department, DEP sue companies over Superfund site

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The U.S. Department of Justice and the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection sued 17 companies in U.S. District Court Friday in a step toward recovering a fraction of the cost of cleaning up a Superfund site in Lawrence County.

The site, in West Pittsburg, was run by Reactive Metals and Alloys Corp., or Remacor, and accepted magnesium shavings and scrap that was then turned into a reagent used in steel production. A 2005 fire shut down the processing function of the plant, but it continued to take in magnesium waste, stockpiling 6 million pounds, according to the complaint. The 17 defendant companies provided magnesium waste to Remacor.

Beginning in 2006, the DEP and the EPA removed the waste at a cost of $10.4 million.

The Department of Justice filed a signed consent decree under which the companies have agreed to pay a total of $1.1 million to the federal government, and $26,000 to the DEP, to cover part of the cost of the clean-up. It is up to U.S. District Judge Mark R. Hornak to approve or reject the decree.

environment - neigh_north

Rich Lord: rlord@post-gazette.com.


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