United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Removal Action.
The former McLouth Steel facility originally consisted of about 273 acres and operated from around 1950 until 1995. In 1995, McLouth filed for bankruptcy. In 1996, the McLouth bankruptcy estate sold the McLouth facility to Hamlin Holdings, Inc., which transferred title to Detroit Steel Co. Ltd., or DSC. DSC tried without success to restart steel operations. In 2000, DSC sold the 76-acre northern portion of the facility to Crown Enterprises, Inc. who then transferred title to Riverview-Trenton Railroad Company (or RTRR). The Michigan Department of Environment, Great Lakes, and Energy (EGLE) is overseeing the investigation and cleanup of the northern portion of the site.
In 2017, Wayne County acquired 183 acres of the 197-acre southern portion through tax foreclosure. Wayne County then entered into a Purchase and Development Agreement with Crown. Crown transferred title to MSC Land Company, LLC. The remaining 14 approximate acres are owned by DSC.
Under the terms of the Purchase Agreement between Wayne County and MSC, MSC is required to invest $20,000,000 in two phases to demolish structures and construct an industrial development. The Purchase Agreement says under no circumstance will the development include the storage or processing of petroleum coke.
Under a separate agreement called an Administrative Settlement Agreement and Covenant Not to Sue (Settlement Agreement) between MSC and EPA, EGLE, and the U.S. Department of Justice, MSC and Crown, parties not responsible for contamination on the property (non-liable parties) received covenants not to sue. To secure the covenants, the Settlement Agreement requires MSC to do the following work in the southern portion of the site:
• Demolish about 45 structures,
• Remove asbestos-containing material, wastes, and PCBs, from all structures before demolition,
• Install a fence around the property,
• Remove water and sludges from 23 subsurface structures,
• Investigate five areas where PCBs may have been released, and
• Assess and report on options for stormwater management to eliminate uncontrolled flow to the Detroit River.
On May 13, 2019, the southern portion was listed on the Superfund National Priorities List (NPL).
Preliminary Removal Assessment/Removal Site Inspection Results
Multiple environmental reports were issued between 1999-2017. The most recent report issued by ECT Environmental Consulting & Technology, Inc. identified 134 Recognized Environmental Conditions including abandoned debris piles, machinery and equipment, hazardous material storage piles, waste treatment process piles, and other industrial equipment. Many of these identified conditions were located within the southern portion.
More information about the McLouth cleanup can be found at www.epa.gov/superfund/mclouth-steel