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EPA proposes $36-million cleanup of waters off Palos Verdes

June 11, 2009 |  3:09 pm


The Environmental Protection Agency on Thursday proposed spending at least $36 million to clean up the world’s largest deposit of the banned pesticide DDT, located 200 feet underwater off the coast of the Palos Verdes Peninsula.

Montrose Chemical Corp., which was based near Torrance, released 110 tons of DDT and 10 tons of toxic PCB’s into the sewers from 1947 through 1971. The chemicals then flowed into the Pacific. The EPA in 1996 declared about 17 square miles of ocean a Superfund site, ranking it among the most hazardous places in the country.

Chemical companies, including Montrose Chemical Corp., which manufactured the DDT, agreed to pay a total of $73 million in 2000 to help restore the ocean environment.

The total settlement of $145 million was one of the largest payments ever for a natural resource case.

--Jeff Gottlieb

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