The Environmental Protection Agency has awarded $50,000 to a St. Mary's County citizens' group so it can hire an outside expert to review the federal agency's plan to incinerate contaminated soil at a Superfund site in Hollywood.
Sen. Barbara A. Mikulski, D-Md., said she requested the grant to ensure that citizens' be heard on the issue of the planned cleanup of the old Southern Maryland Wood Treatment plant.
The EPA plans to burn 100,000 tons of soil contaminated with creosote, pentachlorophenol and small amounts of dioxin, all probable human carcinogens, at the site. The project is expected to cost about $70 million, with Maryland paying $7million and the EPA the rest, according to Lesley Brunker, EPA's project manager.
The Environmental Awareness Coalition, a local citizens' group, has questioned the safety of burning the contaminated soil and pressed state and federal officials to consider alternative ways of treating the toxic site.