Canadian Manufacturing

Shell spending US$55M to clean soil at former rubber plant

From 1940 to 1972, benzene, propane, butane and other chemicals were dumped into unlined pits at the 280-acre complex



TORRANCE, Calif.—Shell Oil Co. will spend $55 million to clean contaminated soil at a former Los Angeles County rubber plant under an agreement with the federal government.

The deal announced by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency requires Shell to clean contaminants from chemical waste at the Del Amo Superfund site near Torrance.

For years benzene, propane, butane and other chemicals were dumped into unlined pits at the 280-acre complex, which operated from the 1940s through 1972.

The EPA says Shell, one of the site’s owners and operators, will inject chemicals into the ground to break down contaminants and use a vacuum system to extract harmful soil vapours. Some areas will be capped with concrete to prevent the release of harmful chemicals that are in the soil and groundwater.

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