More than 20 million Americans live within one mile of toxic waste sites that have been linked to infant deaths, cancer and mental health issues.

The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) listed 1,340 ‘Superfunds’ as of 2024, which are locations where hazardous materials were dumped, left out or improperly managed.

New Jersey has the most with 155 across the state, including the Raritan River which was contaminated by chemicals and pharmaceuticals for nearly century.

A decommissioned gold mine in California was release acid waste into a local river that caused a rise of cancer in the surrounding community – one in 50 people were stricken with the disease.

In Pennsylvania, a Styrofoam maker dumped chemicals into water systems used by more than 76,000 people and a site in Pensacola, Florida where a plant produces fertilizer that contaminated ground water, sludge and soil.

The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has listed 1,340 Superfund sites as of 2024 where hazardous materials were dumped, left out or improperly managed. More than 20 million Americans live within one mile of the sites

New Jersey has the most with 155 locations across the state, including Raritan River from the American Cyanamid site, which dumped chemicals and pharmaceuticals, and distilled coal tar into the body of water for nearly century (pictured)

New Jersey has the most with 155 locations across the state, including Raritan River from the American Cyanamid site, which dumped chemicals and pharmaceuticals, and distilled coal tar into the body of water for nearly century (pictured) 

Janet McCabe, deputy administrator of the EPA, said communities around the country have been ‘long-overburdened by pollution’ that poses ‘dangerous health risks.’

Another Superfund in Laramie, Wyoming is home to the Baxter/Union Pacific Tie Treating site.

The Union Pacific Railroad (UPRR) operated the plant for the treatment of railroad ties and other wood preserving operations on an intermittent basis from 1886 to 1983. 

The company was known for historical spills of now banned chemicals that impacting breathing, and these toxins leaked into the soil and groundwater.

The ‘Superfund’ was created as a trust fund created by Congress in 1980 to repurpose land polluted by heavy industry – but only this year has any money been added to help communities.

In February, President Joe Biden announced a $1 billion to fund cleanup projects at 25 hazardous waste sites from New Jersey to Oregon.

New Jersey has three sites among the 25 including Raritan Bay Slag in Old Bridge and Sayreville.

Sea Land Development Corporation constructed a seawall in the area using waste pulled from the Atlantic Ocean, which was used to smelt metal in the late 1960s to early 1970s.

The waste impacted about 2,500 feet of the seawall, forcing portions of the waterfront to remain closed.

There are continuing concerns about the effects of lead that has been shown to accumulate not just on the seafloor, but in birds, fish and humans. 

Brian K. Thompson, attorney for the EPA, said: ‘The lead contamination at the Raritan Bay beach and park is a threat to the health of the people who live in this community and it is now time for NL [National Lead] Industries to fulfill its legal responsibility to conduct the cleanup. 

‘The cleanup will make it possible for children to play at the beach safely and for everyone to enjoy the beach without fear of lead exposure.’

In Clackamas, Oregon, the funding will help clean up the Northwest Pipe & Casing/Hall Process Company site where pipes were made and coated from the 1950s to the 1980s contaminating soil and groundwater with solvents, primers, coal tar and other pollutants, the EPA said.

New Jersey's Raritan Bay Slag in Old Bridge and Sayreville is one of its 155 Superfund sites. Sea Land Development Corporation constructed the Laurence Harbor seawall and the western jetty using waste from the bottom of industrial blast furnaces

New Jersey’s Raritan Bay Slag in Old Bridge and Sayreville is one of its 155 Superfund sites. Sea Land Development Corporation constructed the Laurence Harbor seawall and the western jetty using waste from the bottom of industrial blast furnaces

California has the second-highest number of Superfund sites, with 96 stretching across the state including the Argonaut Mine in Jackson.Pictured is acid mine drainage flowing into a near by river

California has the second-highest number of Superfund sites, with 96 stretching across the state including the Argonaut Mine in Jackson.Pictured is acid mine drainage flowing into a near by river

The top two causes of death in Clackamas County are major cardiovascular diseases and cancer, with bronchus, lung and breast as the leading causes.

California has the second-highest number of Superfund sites, with 96 stretching across the state including the Argonaut Mine in Jackson.

In Clackamas, Oregon, the funding will help clean up the Northwest Pipe & Casing/Hall Process Company site where pipes were made and coated

In Clackamas, Oregon, the funding will help clean up the Northwest Pipe & Casing/Hall Process Company site where pipes were made and coated

The mine was a hard rock gold mine from the 1850s until 1942 where raw ore was processed and mercury was combined to extract gold from the crushed ore.

Because of the process, the soil became contaminated with arsenic, lead and mercury.

The Argonaut High School is located approximately 250 feet to the west of the Tailings Area and Jackson Junior High School is 550 feet to the east.

The EPA committed $25 million to clean up the mine from June 1, 2022, to November 2023.

John Hillenbrand, EPA Geologist and Project Manager on the Argonaut Mine Superfund Site, said: ‘The amount of risk reduction has been huge.

‘Before the cleanup, in this particular pocket, the risk of cancer was one in 50. Now, it has reduced to one in 10,000.’

The A.I.W. Frank Corp. (AIW)/Mid-County Mustang Site covers 16 acres in Exton. The facility produced styrofoam cups and plates and used chemicals to clean machines that affect the human central nervous system

The A.I.W. Frank Corp. (AIW)/Mid-County Mustang Site covers 16 acres in Exton. The facility produced styrofoam cups and plates and used chemicals to clean machines that affect the human central nervous system

Pennsylvania has the third most Superfund sites in the US, accounting for 91.

The A.I.W. Frank Corp. (AIW)/Mid-County Mustang Site covers 16 acres in Exton, Chester County, Pennsylvania.

The facility produced styrofoam cups and plates and used chemicals to clean machines that affect the human central nervous system.

The solvents used to clean auto engines were discharged into floor drains in the building and from there into an on-site stone bed drain field. 

In December 1983, a consultant to CDS Investments detected TCE, PCE, methylene chloride, and carbon tetrachloride at the floor drain and drain field.

Chester County is also where  957 miles of streams were deemed as ‘impaired,’ meaning they do not meet water quality standards

An estimated 76,700 people obtain drinking water from public and private wells within 3 miles of the site.

This post first appeared on Dailymail.co.uk

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