EPA Recognizes Former Texas City, TX, Superfund Site for Excellence in Reuse

DALLAS – The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) recognized stakeholders at the former Tex Tin Superfund site in Texas City, Texas, with EPA’s Excellence in Site Reuse award. The award recognizes Superfund site partners who have collaborated with EPA to support redeveloping Superfund sites in ways that are beneficial to the community and compatible with the cleanup. The former tin and copper smelter was placed on the National Priorities List of contaminated sites in 1998, and following extensive cleanup and monitoring is now being reused as a bulk oil storage and transfer facility.

EPA honored the partners who worked toward redeveloping the site for beneficial and protective reuse. Honorees included current Texas City Mayor Matthew T. Doyle and past mayors Charles T. Doyle and Carlos Garza; Port of Texas City; Texas City Terminal Railway Company; the Tex Tin Superfund Site Steering Committee; Robert Piniewski, coordinator for contractor Project Navigator, Ltd.; Danny P. Brown, manager for remedial contractor RECON Services, L.P.; and Genesis Energy, L.P., the site developer.

“The Tex Tin site shows the benefits of stakeholders working together to make the most of formerly contaminated sites,” said Acting Regional Administrator Samuel Coleman. “Because of the efforts of these different groups, the site is now an active part of the Texas City economy.”

“At EPA’s behest, future development was included as a key consideration for the remedy at the Tex Tin Site. Future development served as a guiding principle throughout the design and successful implementation of the Tex Tin Site remediation, which culminated with construction of Genesis’s terminal; a great example of EPA’s goal of helping the community reclaim a former Superfund site,” said site steering committee co-chair Edgard Bertraut. “EPA, and later Genesis, worked cooperatively and diligently with the Tex Tin Steering Committee throughout the process of expedited remedy design, remedy implementation, and site redevelopment.”

The former Tex Tin site, on about 140 acres near Galveston Bay, operated as a tin and copper smelter from the beginning of World War II until the mid-1980s. Cleanup at the site addressed waste piles, wastewater treatment ponds, acid ponds and smelting-waste slag piles, and contamination in nearby Swan Lake Marsh and the surrounding ecosystem.

EPA has supported beneficial reuse at the site for many years. In 2001, EPA awarded a Superfund redevelopment grant to Texas City. In 2003, EPA issued the nation’s first Ready for Reuse determination for a Superfund site, which stated the site remedy would remain protective for industrial uses (as long as certain conditions were met). This determination gave potential developers assurance from EPA that the formerly contaminated site is clear for appropriate industrial reuse and redevelopment.

Redevelopment began in 2015, with coordination from EPA, other cleanup partners, and Genesis Energy, LP. to ensure the site remedy was protected during construction and future use. The formerly contaminated, abandoned site now employs several workers, supports local industry, and contributes to the Texas City economy.