Lockheed Martin Agrees to EPA Chromium Investigation in Glendale

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency yesterday entered into an agreement with aerospace manufacturer Lockheed Martin to investigate the site of Loral Librascope, a former electronic weapons manufacturer in Glendale, Calif., for chromium contamination. Loral Librascope, which produced electronic weapons and combat systems between 1949 and the 1990s, is bordered by Sonora Avenue and Flower Street. The company, acquired by Lockheed by merger in 1996, joined a 2000 consent decree to implement the EPA's cleanup of solvent-contaminated groundwater in the Glendale Superfund site area.

"The EPA is requiring Lockheed Martin to perform a subsurface contamination investigation at the former Loral Librascope site as part of our ongoing investigation of soil and groundwater chromium contamination in the Glendale area," said Keith Takata, EPA's Superfund director for the Pacific Southwest region. "Cleaning up the contamination is essential to protecting the San Fernando Valley groundwater resources from further chromium contamination."

EPA has been active in groundwater cleanup efforts in the San Fernando Valley area since the early 1980s when solvent contamination was first discovered. Last year, EPA launched a focused investigation on chromium groundwater contamination within the Glendale Superfund site area that will lead to cleanups at chromium sources impacting Glendale area groundwater.

Chromium is a metal found in natural deposits as ores containing other elements. The greatest use of chromium is in metal alloys such as stainless steel, protective coatings on metal, magnetic tapes, and pigments for paints, cement, paper, rubber, composition floor covering, and other materials. Its soluble forms are used in wood preservatives.

For more information on chromium, visit www.epa.gov/region09/waste/sfund/chromium/index.html or www.epa.gov/safewater/contaminants/dw_contamfs/chromium.html.

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