South Minneapolis contamination area now a superfund site


How does the arsenic removal issue break down?

In our October print edition, Scott Russell gives the following report about the South Minneapolis Residential Soil Contamination site’s designation as a superfund site. For even more information, see Cooper resident and blogger Ed Kohler’s analysis and personal take on the issue, and you can see more of Koehler’s daily weblog contributions at

Parts of Seward and south Minneapolis are now on the Superfund National Priorities List, in what is known as the South Minneapolis Residential Soil Contamination site.

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) made the move Sept. 19, according to a government news release. The EPA first proposed creating the site in September 2006. The designation allows EPA to get additional resources to evaluate, select and perform long-term cleanup work.

According to the EPA news release:

The site is centered on Hiawatha Avenue and East 28th Street, the former home of the CMC Heartland Lite Yard. Years ago, the company made an arsenic-based pesticide there. EPA officials believe that open-air procedures for mixing and unloading toxic materials allowed them to blow into nearby neighborhoods.

To date, EPA has identified 197 properties with arsenic contamination levels requiring prompt action. Of these, about 160 will be cleaned by the end of this month. The remaining properties will be addressed in 2008.

The Superfund site has a roughly oval shape. At its widest, it stretches along East 28th Street from 10th Avenue South to 31st Avenue South. At its longest, it runs from I-94 to East 35th Street, following a line just east of Cedar Avenue. A map of the Superfund site can be found on page 3 of the following document:

Find EPA updates at