AFS/Airport - Sitewide
Past Work on Site
Numerous contaminated sites exist at the Galena Airport and are organized as different Installation Restoration Program sites by the Air Force. Former bulk fuel storage areas (Million Gallon Hill, POL Tank Farm) and distribution points (JP4 Fillstands) have resulted in subsurface petroleum contamination. Primary contaminants of concern are benzene, gasoline-range organics, diesel-range organics, and other constituents of petroleum products. Historical practices at former shops and warehouses (Bldgs. 1845/1700) within the main base have resulted in a chlorinated solvent plume that has migrated towards the airport drinking water wells. Primary contaminants of concern are trichloroethylene (TCE), TCE degradation products, and petroleum constituents. Drinking water well sampling in 2003 and 2004 has not detected contaminants above cleanup levels, and the main airport drinking water well has been protected by an air stripper since 1996. Free-phase petroleum still exists at some monitoring wells near the contamination source areas, and downgradient dissolved phase petroleum plumes have been delineated. New monitoring wells continue to be installed and sampled to monitor the contaminants relative to downgradient receptors, such as the Yukon River and the Old Town drinking water wells. Migration of volatile contaminants into the indoor air of buildings has been addressed at selected sites (POL Tank Farm, Bldg. 1872). Other sitewide concerns include the past use of pesticides such as DDT and aldrin, which have been intermittently detected at low concentrations in the soil and groundwater. Investigation and remedial activities are ongoing. Remedial Investigation/Feasibility Study and Human Health Risk Assessment reports are currently being completed. The installation is a former Air Force Forward Operating Base that is currently undergoing closure under the 2005 round of Base Realignment and Closure. Certain buildings on base are owned City of Galena for use by the Galena City School District. Potential base reuse is focused around expansion of the school systems. While there is no official Local Redevelopment Authority since the State owns the property that the Air Force currently holds in reserve or leases, the Galena Economic Development Committee is functioning as a de facto LRA by coordinating with both the State and the Air Force. The contaminated sites at Galena Airport have received increased attention by the Air Force and DEC since 2002 when the sites underwent a Remedial Process Optimitization. Since the optimization process began, regular meetings of a Technical Project Team (TPT) have commenced. The TPT is compromised of many stakeholders, including the Louden Tribal Council, City of Galena, Galena City Schools, Air Force, and DEC. Another entity fostering communication with stakeholders and the community is the Galena Restoration Advisory Board, which discusses the sites at Galena Airport, as well as nearby Campion Air Station and Kalakaket Creek Radio Relay Station. EPA ID AK9570028655; EPA site name USAF Galena Air Force Station.