Chormium Cleanup Partnership

From 1905 to 1976, Hudson County was a center for chrome manufacturing, processing chromite ore imported into the United States. In the early 1900s, the Natural Products Refining Company opened a chrome plant at 880-900 Garfield Avenue.

PPG purchased the plant in 1954 and ceased operations in 1963, selling the facility and property in 1964. The manufacturing process used at the facility produced a waste byproduct known as chromate chemical production waste, or CCPW.

Over the years, the soil impacted with CCPW was used as fill material at residential, commercial and industrial construction sites. One component of CCPW, hexavalent chromium, has been linked to certain health concerns, according to the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection.

The Chromium Cleanup Partnership was formed in 2009 when the Superior Court of New Jersey, the City of Jersey City, the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection and PPG agreed on a process for addressing the cleanup of 20 chromium sites in Hudson County for which PPG is responsible.

To help meet this objective, the court created the position of an independent site administrator with oversight responsibilities.

In particular, the site administrator is charged with:

  • Developing a judicially enforceable master schedule, including a timetable for submitting project work plans by PPG, reviewing those documents by an independent technical consultant and issuing subsequent ruling by NJDEP;
  • Monitoring closely, facilitating and promoting partnership progress in meeting master schedule milestones;
  • Conducting meetings to resolve issues that might arise;
  • Hiring and supervising the independent technical consultant and experts as needed for the review of PPG’s submittals;
  • Maintaining regular communications with community representatives, soliciting their opinions and ideas; and
  • Communicating community concerns to the partnership.

Superior Court

In May of 2005, the State of New Jersey filed a lawsuit against PPG and two other chromium manufacturers to clean up all remaining sites for which they are responsible. In 2009, PPG reached a settlement agreement with the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection and the City of Jersey City on a process for the cleanup of PPG’s sites. Represented by the independent site administrator, the court is responsible for enforcing the terms of the agreement.

City of Jersey City

As a party to the agreement, Jersey City officials are responsible for representing the interests of the city, including its residents.

NJDEP

The New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection (NJDEP) has responsibility for reviewing and approving PPG’s project plans and field operations, including final remedies. In particular, the agency determines the cleanup standards that must be met. No cleanup can proceed unless it meets the requirements set by NJDEP.

PPG

A former chromium manufacturer, PPG is responsible for the cleanup of chromium sites in the June 2009 agreement.