A project of this complexity will take several years to complete. To realize the project vision, the site must be reclaimed to safe levels in order to be suitable for the intended reuse. Final completion of the project is expected to be achieved within a five to ten year timeframe, depending on the level of contamination and reclamation needed. The period from early 2015 through December 2017 included project feasibility discussions, initial environmental assessments, securing site ownership, outreach, and formation of the Acme Working Group. Beginning in 2018, activities will be more focused on addressing the most pressing and manageable environmental and safety hazards at the site, including removal and proper disposal of the drums and asbestos containing materials and PCBs in storage areas. These activities will stabilize the site and prevent further contamination. Future assessments, anticipated to begin in the fall of 2018, will determine the extent of contamination and lead to the development of a mitigation plan and cost estimates. More detailed community discussions on the future uses of the site will follow the assessment work.
As of September 2023, over $1.1 Million has been applied from a combination of state and federal programs, foundation grants, private donations, local government sources, and other partner contributions. Direct assessment and cleanup activities constitute nearly 80% of the project costs, most of which have come from state and federal programs. In 2022, the project was awarded $1,585,000 in federal grants to remove asbestos in the buildings and initiate soil cleanup, including debris removal. As the project transitions into more active cleanup, additional non-federal sources will be needed as matching funds. Support from private foundations, local communities, and individuals will continue to be important. A fund campaign was launched in 2023 to help with matching funds for federal grants.
US Environmental Protection Agency, State of Wyoming, Laura Jane Musser Foundation,
Wolf Creek Charitable Foundation, Wyoming Community Foundation, National Wild Turkey Federation, Resource Legacy Program, The Nature Conservancy
Photo from Weston Solutions
Photo from Sheridan County Conservation District
Initial environmental assessments confirm land impacted by hazardous substances and petroleum hydrocarbons, multiple areas of drums with unknown substances, abandoned buildings contaminated with asbestos and lead-based paint, and debris.
Asbestos: Significant amounts of friable and non-friable asbestos, some of it damaged, were identified within the buildings and in storage areas. Trace amounts of asbestos were found in soils outside of the building. Over 60 cubic yards of bulk and loose asbestos were removed from the site in 2018; however there is still a large quantity within the building to be addressed.
Lead-based paint: Large amounts of lead-based paint were found on walls, ceilings, doors, and window components. Poor condition and deterioration has led to flaking paint scattered throughout the buildings and outside surfaces.
Unknown drum contents: Multiple areas of unlabeled drums are present across the site. Many of the drums are in poor condition. Assessed drums contain oxidizers, flammables, combustibles and non-combustibles. Drums unable to be assessed present unknown hazards. Over 50 55 gallon drums and contents were removed in 2018.
Other contaminants: Various metals, PCBs, petroleum hydrocarbons, and other known carcinogens were identified in soils, bank sediments, coal-ash piles, and groundwater. While much of this contamination was present is low concentrations and mainly in shallow and surface soils, exposure risks via skin contact, inhalation, and ingestion are present for anyone accessing the site.