Environmental Justice Progress Report

Volume 3, March 1997

The environmental justice progress report was prepared by West End Concerned Citizens and Clearwater Revival Company to provide Alameda residents with independent information about Alameda Naval Air Station's accomplishments in addressing environmental injustices that resulted from navy operations in Alameda. To receive a free copy of the this monthly report or for more information, please contact us at clearh2orev@earthlink.net.


Document Production Schedule

RAB Meetings Moved to Nuetral Turf

Presentation by Navy Firefighters exposed to PCBs

Community Acceptance Criteria Update

Site 1 Technology Demonstration a Failure?


Ecological Assessment Evaluation of pollution impacts on wildlife Summer 1997
Human Helath Risk Assessment: Background Cancer risks due to chemicals that occur naturally in the environment Spring 1997
Radiological Report - Site 5 and 10 Assessment of radiation levels throughout buildings and sewers March/April 1997
Draft Engineering Evaluation/Cost Analysis Radiological Removal Action - Sites 5 and 10 Evaluation of the effectiveness and cost of radiation cleanup alternatives Pending Above
Tiered Screening Data Summary Reports Pollutant concentrations found in air, soil and groundwater by site Spring - Summer 1997
Engineering Evaluation and Cost Analysis Site 15 and Site 16 Removal Actions Evaluation of the effectiveness and cost of PCB cleanup alternatives Pending Above
Terrestrial Risk Assessment Operable Units No. 1,2,3 Human health risk assessment from exposure to pollutants in different areas of the base. Late Summer 1997
Sediments Characterization and Treatabilit Study: Draft Final Work Plan Details on how sampling will be performed to determine a cleanup strategy for sediments in off-shore areas of the base. Spring 1997
Intrinsic Bioremediation Assessment Report Results of an evaluation to determine if pollution will clean itself up. Summer 1997
Natural Attenuation of Chlorinated Hydrocarbons: Preliminary Site Assessment Work Plan Initial sampling plan to evaluate whether pollution from man-made chemicals will clean itself up. Spring -Summer 1997
Draft Sampling Analysis Resolution Resources 3-D Seismic Profiling Demonstration Preliminary results of technology demonstrations for determining earthquake hazards. Spring 1997
Work Plan for Electromagnetic Subsurface Survey Demonstration Plan to evaluate technology for determining location of buried tanks, chemical drums, waste munitions, or pipelines. Spring 1997
How to review a Remedial Investigation/Feasibiltiy Studty Report Review of air, soil, and groundwater sample results and evaluations of cleanup alternatives. Late Spring 1997
Remedial Investigation Report OU-1 Air, soil, and groundwater sample results for the OU-1 sites. July/August 1997
Work Plan discussion for Investigaiton of Evironmental Baseline Areas Discussion on the proposed investigation to determine background pollution levels in air, soil, and groundwater in West Alameda. November/December 1997
Site 1 Funnel & gate Demonstration Report Results of on-going technology demonstration being conducted at Site 1. Fall 1997


The meeting place and meeting day of the Alameda Restoration Advisory Board (RAB) have been criticized. Prior to March 4, 1997, meetings were held at the Naval Air Station and some community members found the location intimidating and uncomfortable (lack of building heat). In March, forced by necessity the RAB meetings were moved to Paden School. Future RAB meetings will be held at Paden or at Chipman MidDle School.

Community members have expressed equal concern that the RAB meetings are held at the same time as City Council meetings which prohibits the participation of an active portion of the community and cecreases attendance at the RAB meetings. During a January vote, the RAB refused to change meeting nights.

Despite the change to nuetral turf only two community members were in the audience at the March RAB meeting.

Highlights of DOD's Public Participation Checklist

Environmental Justice Public Participation Checklist


The following checklist was developed by the Department of Defense from information received from the nineteen federal agencies involved in implementation of Executive Order 12898: Federal Actions to Address Environmental Justice in Minority Populations and Low-Income Populations. The checklist was finalized and approved by the Interagency Working Group and the National Environmental Justice Advisory Council.


Revised 1/13/95

13. Schedule meetings and/or public hearings to make them accessible and user-friendly for Environmental Justice stakeholders. Consider time frames that do not conflict with work schedules, rush hours, dinner hours, and other community commitments that may decrease attendance. Consider locationsand facilities that are local, convenient, and which represent neutral turf.

Ensure that the facility meets the Americans with Disabilities Act Statements for equal access. Provide assistance for hearing impaired individuals. Whenever practical and appropriate provide translators for limited-English speaking communities. Advertise the meeting and its proposed agenda in a timely manner in the print and electronic media.

Provide a phone number and/or address for communities to find out about pending meetings, issues, enter concerns, to seek participation, or alter meeting agenda.

Create an atmosphere of equal participation (avoid a "panel of experts" or "head table"). A two-day meeting is suggested with the first day reserved for community planning and education. Organize meetings to provide an open exchange of ideas and enough time to consider issues of community concern. Consider the use of a neutral facilitator who is sensitive and trained in environmental justice issues. Ensure that minutes of the meeting are publicly available. Develop a mechanism to provide communities with feedbackafter meetings occur on actions being considered.

For a complete copy of the Department of Defense's Environmental Justice Public Participation Checklist


Navy Firefighter and Union Representative Brooke Beasley provided a presentation to the RAB of an important concern in cleaning up the Naval Air Station for civilian reuse - an employer's duty to notify workers of potential toxic exposures. Fire fighters said they learned of PCB contamination at Site 15 through news articles they read in May 1995. Despite the Navy's discovery of PCB contamination at Site 15 in 1983, firefighters performed weed control in the area without gloves and their dirty clothing may have carried contaminated dust into their homes exposing their families.

Firefighters want the base restoration to include a human restoration component. They have asked the Navy to document their exposure and to perform screening for PCBs in both active and retired firefighters. The firefighter's requests are similar to the East Bay Conversion and Reinvestment Coommission recommendations which inlcude health screenings for workers and residents that were potentiallty exposed to pollutants from Navy operations (see EJPP Vol.1).


The Community Acceptance Criteria was prepared by West End Concerned Citizens and is intended to be a proactive demonstration of community involvement. WECC members have become increasingly frustrated at the lack of response to the public's concerns, the inadequate information provided to the public, and the lack of opportunities for the public to participate in the decision making process during the land pollution cleanup at NAS. An updated draft of the Community Acceptance Criteria was distributed at the February RAB meeting.

Normally the community's opinions are sought after much time and effort has been invested by the Navy and regulators in planning a cleanup strategy. Community involvement has the effect of delaying cleanup or increasing cleanup costs when the community feels their concerns are not addressed by the NavyÕs proposed cleanup plans.

The community acceptance criteria are intended to provide the Navy and regulators with guidance during the cleanup planning stage increasing the likelihood that the final cleanup plans are consistent with the local communities environmental and economic sustainability goals.


Cleanup levels are normally determined based on the land use of the contaminated property with little consideration for the surrounding property uses. Such a policy ensures that residents located in mixed-use (residential/industrial) neighborhoods will face a greater pollution burden then residents located in residential-only neighborhoods.

The Community Acceptance Criteria proposes buffer zones around special property uses in order to provide an equivalent level of health protection in mixed-use neighborhoods. Cleanup levels should be developed that are consistent with the buffer zones.

1) The highest obtainable cleanup levels should be met that allow for property uses without restriction within 250 feet of existing or proposed residences, schools and parks.

2) Drinking water standards should be used for groundwater cleanup levels within 750 feet of private wells, subterranean basements, and other potential groundwater exposure points.

3) Ambient water quality standards that are protective of the food chain should be met within 250 feet of buried utilities (concern with infiltration and inflow into storm sewers) and within 250 feet of the shoreline (groundwater discharge to bay).


The funnel and gate technology demonstration at Site 1 was intended to be a demonstration of an innovative cleanup technology. A report summarizing the technologies effectiveness in removing chemicals from groundwater at Site 1 will not be available until Fall 1997. However, if the success of technology demonstration were to be evaluated based on its short-term effectiveness it would be determined to be a failure.

Implementation of a cleanup plan should not have to defeat the purpose of the cleanup.

February 1997 Edition | NAS Site Map | Clearwater Revival Home Page

Revised March 27, 1997