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Toxics Cleanup Program

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The Study Area: In 2017 we are working on 44 properties in this area.

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Ruston/North Tacoma Study Area: This map shows the sequence of future soil replacement work.

Tacoma Smelter Plume

Yard Program Updates for the Study Area

Soil Replacement Progress

The Study Area is the area where the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) oversaw ASARCO’s soil sampling and replacement work in the early 1990’s and 2000’s.  This year we are working in Areas 1 and 2 to replace soils in 44 yards (see map to right).  Through the Yard Program, we are able to remove and replace soil in 80-100 yards each year. 

We have replaced soil on a total of 190 yards inside the Study Area.

  • In 2016, we replaced soil in 69 yards.
  • In 2015, we replaced soil in 65 yards.
  • In 2014, we replaced soil in 48 yards.
  • In 2013, we replaced soil in eight yards.

Updated Service Area and Sequence

In 2016, we updated our Yard Program soil replacement sequence (see map to right).

The soil replacement sequence is based on the percentage of properties with the highest remaining soil contamination and properties that had no previous EPA soil replacement action.  We started with the darker shades of green and over time, we will move to the lighter shades.  For more information on the sequence, please see the Program Design and Implementation Plan (March 2013).

  • Area 1: This area has the highest percentage of yards with the highest remaining contamination.  We started work in this area in 2014 and plan to continue through 2017.
  • Area 2: Over 200 yards qualify for soil replacement in this area. We started work in this area in 2016 and plan to continue through 2020.
  • Area 3, 4, 5: These areas were closest to the former smelter and previously received the most amount of soil replacement work.  It will be several years before planning and soil replacement starts here.

Notifying homeowners of sampling data:

Ecology and Tacoma Pierce County Health Department reviewed past sampling results from the Environmental Protection Agency's Superfund cleanup site.

  • Over the next couple of years, we will continue to notify homeowners of the reviewed sampling results for their property. If you live in the Study Area (see maps to right), visit the Public database to find soil sampling results and soil replacement information for your property.


For more information about cleanup in the Study Area, please visit our Ruston and North Tacoma webpage or call our Project Line at (360) 407-7688 x 2, to leave a message for the Yard Program staff.

This page last updated July 2017