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Waste Site Cleanup & Reuse in New England

Vermont Asbestos Group (VAG) Mine Site

VAG Mine Site, Eden/Lowell, VT

From the early 1900's to 1993, the Vermont Asbestos Group (VAG) mine site located on Belvidere Mountain in Eden and Lowell, Vermont was an active asbestos mine. During the mine's operation, millions of tons of 2-3% chrysotile asbestos ore was excavated. The ore excavation process generated tons of waste rock and mine tailings. In July 2007, the Vermont Agency of Natural Resources requested EPA assistance to inspect water diversion trenches previously constructed at the site which were being impacted by precipitation and drainage pathways, and to discuss short term solutions. In Oct. 2007, EPA mobilized to the VAG mine site to begin a time critical removal action (construction of diversion trenches, berms, and sedimentation basins to keep the contaminated runoff from the tailing piles from reaching the tributaries and brooks). In June 2008, EPA re-mobilized to the site to continue efforts to keep asbestos laden runoff water from leaving the property. Actions included inspection of features completed the previous fall and reworking a number of areas to be able to accept additional flow and sediment, which was necessary due to extremely heavy precipitation and ensuing runoff. New berms and trenches were constructed around the mine's original tailings pile. These structures were designed to carry runoff beyond the pile and reconnect to Hutchins Brook, maintaining the hydrologic flow to down-gradient wetlands. EPA performed a preliminary assessment/site inspection (PA/SI) to evaluate the site for potential listing on the Superfund National Priorities List (NPL).

Location: Eden & Lowell, VT
EPA Mobilization Date*: 10/15/2007
EPA Demobilization Date*: 08/28/2008
Contact: Jim Murphy (murphy.jim@epa.gov), 617-918-1028

In July 2013 the VT DEC Waste Management and Prevention Division again requested US EPA assistance in addressing a deteriorating onsite storage building filled with dry asbestos "ore". This building, which is beginning to fail, contains approximately 18,000 cubic yards of ore and is threatening to release the contents to the environment. The ore contains high levels of asbestos and is in a very loose and friable state, making it very easy to become airborne.

EPA began to mobilize their cleanup contractor the week of September 16, 2013. The building was assessed to determine if demolition of the building was necessary and determine what the volume of ore in the building was. After examining the building, less ore was present that originally thought and there was no need for demolition of the building.

Approximately 1,300 yd3 of ore was removed from the building and the remainder capped in place with gravel/stone collected from on-site sources. The building was then boarded up to prevent future access. An additional 500 yd3 of the dry ore was scraped from under nearby conveyer belts, so a total of 1,800 yd3 was placed into a previously excavated adjacent location and covered in a way to prevent erosion and off-site migration. The last piece of heavy equipment was demobilized from the site on October 22, 2013.

Location: Eden, VT
EPA Mobilization Date*: 09/16/2013
EPA Demobilization Date*: 10/22/2013
Contact: Kelsey O'Neil (oneil.kelsey@epa.gov)

*The information contained on this website is merely informational; any dates found on the website cannot be relied upon to create any rights, substantive or procedural, enforceable by any party in litigation with the United States. EPA reserves the right to change such dates at any time without public notice.

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