The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has just announced that a $26 million cleanup will begin this month on Lake George Canal in the cities of East Chicago and Hammond, Indiana.
The waterway is part of the Grand Calumet River Area of Concern on Lake Michigan, identified by the United States and Canada as one of 43 toxic hotspots in the Great Lakes basin.
“Through this public-private partnership, EPA, East Chicago Waterway Management District, Atlantic Richfield and BP will work together to remove more than a century’s legacy contamination, improve habitat and boost economic growth along the Grand Calumet River in Northwest Indiana,” said EPA Region 5 Administrator / Great Lakes National Program Manager Cathy Stepp.
In the release, EPA said that approximately 60,000 cubic yards of contaminated sediment will be dredged from the Lake George Canal. Any material that may remain will be capped and controlled, as needed.
The Grand Calumet River flows 13 miles through the heavily industrialized cities of Gary, East Chicago and Hammond.
The river is recognized as one of the most contaminated in the nation and consists mostly of drainage from nearby cities and industries.
EPA anticipates the cleanup will be completed in 2020.