Source: http://billingsgazette.com, December 13, 2016
By: Christine Peterson
Sinclair Casper Refining Company recently paid the Environmental Protection Agency $655,000 to settle a decades-old cleanup in Thermopolis.
The company agreed in September to pay for costs associated with reclaiming the site of the company’s Thermopolis oil refinery, which operated from 1920 to 1969, according to a news release from the EPA.
“Beginning in 1974, the refinery was razed and equipment was sold and removed from the site by various entities, including Sinclair’s predecessor, Little America Refining Company,” the news release stated. “During demolition activities, a significant amount of asbestos-contaminated pipe insulation was stripped from equipment and disposed at the site.”
When the EPA examined the site in 2011, officials found “significant asbestos contamination.” The federal agency then removed about 4,000 cubic yards of material and soil containing asbestos. Clean, native soil was brought to fill excavated areas in November 2013, and the site was reseeded the following spring.
The agreement is part of the federal Superfund program, which is dedicated to cleaning some of the country’s most contaminated land.
Other Superfund sites in Wyoming included the Baxter/Union Pacific Tie Treating site, which was removed from the list in 1999, F.E. Warren Airforce Base in Cheyenne and the 410-acre Mystery Bridge Road/U.S. Highway 20 site in Evansville.
Exposure to asbestos has been linked to lung cancer and other lung diseases.