Skip to content


City to spend $31 million on radioactive waste remediation within Michael Reese site via Hyde Park Herald

By Jennifer Bamberg

Representatives of the 4th Ward, city officials, and contractors led a virtual meeting on June 1 to discuss the remediation of the former Carnotite Reduction Company site located at 434 E. 26th St. The three-acre plot of land inside the northern part of the former Michael Reese Hospital site is covered in grass, pavement and buried radioactive waste. The site has been contaminated with uranium, radium, and carnotite for over a century, but is finally undergoing remediation with redevelopment imminent

The excavation of radiologically contaminated soil at the United States Environmental Protection Agency (USEPA)–designated superfund site will cost approximately $31,000,000. The city will draw funding for the project from general obligation bonds and funds from the Bronzeville TIF. On-site remediation is set to start July 2021, with earthwork projected for August 2021. 

From 1916 to 1921, the Carnotite Reduction Company and its president, University of Chicago chemistry professor Herbert N. McCoy, brought in tons of radioactive ore by railroad from mines it owned and operated in Utah. Its refining operations separated radium — in-demand due to new cancer treatments — from carnotite-rich sandstone in Chicago using a chemical process, and it is believed that the hazardous tailings were dumped into nearby sewers, ditches, wells, or sand on the site. 

[…]

The city of Chicago has owned the land since 2009 when it was preparing for a failed Olympic bid. In 2017, the city chose a team of real estate firms to redevelop the land through a consortium dubbed the Global Research Innovation & Tourism district (GRIT). 

Zoning plans for the $3.8 billion development passed through City Council earlier this year. The first phase includes a medical research center, the Bronzeville Welcoming Center, and 300 units of senior housing, with a plan to create 6.7 million square feet of retail, residential and mixed-use development in a future second phase. 

Surveys conducted in 1979, 2009, and 2011 by the USEPA and the Illinois Department of Public Health (IDPH) Division of Radiological Health concluded that the contamination did not pose an immediate health threat, but removal of the contaminated soil presents the need to establish institutional controls to monitor radiation.  

[…]

Kimberly Worthington, Deputy Commissioner of Environmental Health and Safety Management at the city’s Assets, Information, and Services (AIS) Department, detailed the scope of the work. Contaminated soil from six to 14 feet below surface area will be excavated and transported in sealed bags via truck and rail car to a radiological waste landfill in Texas. The excavated area will then be filled with stone and/or soil and remain fenced off until redevelopment occurs. 

Kris Schnoes, an environmental scientist at Tetra Tech Inc, the contractor chosen as the remediation oversight consultant, detailed the air monitoring plan. Instruments to monitor radiological dust will be installed along the perimeter of the site and within the site to monitor the air for the workers. If dust is observed, work will cease.Water misting will be the primary control to mitigate dust, and a dewatering system will be used to capture and properly dispose of contaminated water runoff. Eight foot high fences with windscreens will surround the site as well. 

[…]

Schnoes says, “You can call 311 if you see dust or something and want an inspector to come out.” The Carnotite Co. Chicago website will have live updates on air quality and information for local residents.

There are no plans for active cover placed on the excavation, “but as excavation progresses, we believe the excavation hole is going to get smaller and smaller because the contractor is going to be backfilling,” said Ram Ramasamy with AIS. “What the contractor was telling me is essentially the dust issue from wind can arise only from about zero to about three feet. Anything deeper, it’s going to be hard for the wind to kick up the dust.”

[…]

The former city agency responsible for conducting oversight of the Carnotite Co. site and interfacing with state and federal bodies, the Department of Environment, was dissolved on January 1, 2012 by Mayor Rahm Emanuel. Members of its staff were reassigned to several different departments. At the time, the USEPA expressed concern over how the move would affect future interactions between USEPA and the City, as well as any City oversight of radiation monitoring at the site.

report from the Better Government Association in 2019 revealed that environmental inspections and enforcement actions declined since the elimination of the department along with a dedicated hotline for resident complaints about pollution. Instead, residents are told to direct environmental concerns to 311, which was suggested at last week’s meeting. 

[…]

Read more.

Posted in *English.

Tagged with , , .


11 Responses

Stay in touch with the conversation, subscribe to the RSS feed for comments on this post.

  1. Delhi escorts says

    Why have you not mentioned about.

  2. dgcustomerfirst says

    A very awesome blog post. We are really grateful for your blog post. You will find a lot of approaches after visiting your post. I was exactly searching for. Thanks for such post and please keep it up.

  3. Delhi escorts says

    This is for your information

  4. Delhi escorts says

    Don’t dare to comment below me. You will face dmca

  5. wordpress外贸建站 says

    it’s not good

  6. dark web links says

    While surfing the Internet, many people use the search engines to locate websites that they need and this is a legal method of obtaining the information that they need. However, it is quite easy to get yourself into a lot of trouble if you are not aware of the different ways in which you can use the Internet to obtain personal and business information. There are many online directories which allow anyone to view information about realtors, attorneys, lawyers, sex offenders, bankruptcies, phone numbers, email addresses, and much more. However, if you are interested in using these services for any unlawful purpose, such as the obtaining of sexual information, or even committing identity theft, then it is very important for you to know how to use the Dark Web directories properly and in order to stay out of legal trouble.

  7. Automotive Locksmith Tempe AZ says

    Thanks for another wonderful post. Where else could anybody get that type of info in such an ideal way of writing?

  8. MyGiftCardSite says

    That’s great. I was impressed by your writing. I am happy to see such a topic.

  9. Aditya says

    Thanks For Sharing such a wonderful article the way you presented is really amazing

  10. Sh2hab says

    Thank you for sharing this great and useful post.
    شركة تويكسات

  11. apk mod says

    thanks



Some HTML is OK

or, reply to this post via trackback.