The Environmental Protection Agency has officially removed the newly redeveloped Midvale Slag site from the Superfund National Priorities List.
Since 1871, at least five separate smelters operated on the nearly 450 acre site located just west of I-15 at 7200 south in Midvale. When the EPA put the site on its National Priorities List in 1991, both the groundwater and the soil were heavily contaminated with toxic metals, such as lead and arsenic. But after years of work, the site is now home to businesses and homes. Shuan McGrath is a regional administrator for the EPA. He says the success of the Midvale site is an example for the rest of the country.
“Success today is more than just fencing off sites and eliminating risk and exposure to contaminates," he says. "The most successful cleanup sites are the ones that produce jobs, and income and provide needed space for housing, parks, and open space, what you have achieved here.”
Amanda Smith is the Executive Director of the Utah Department of Environmental Quality. She says while the project has been difficult, seeing the benefits has been extremely rewarding.
“This really is a success," she says. "And it’s a success that emphasizes the role that environmental quality and environmental protection play in our economic development and in our community development.”
The site is now home to more than 2,000 and its total taxable value has risen by more than $300 million since the beginning of the project. It’s the 387th EPA Superfund site to be removed from the national priorities list. There are still more than 1,300 left.