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Huntington Beach Union High School District

Ascon Landfill Information

Photo courtesy of Huntington Beach city

All Independent Environmental Testing Indicates Safe Conditions at Edison High School

Edison High School is a neighbor of the Ascon landfill located at Magnolia and Hamilton, on the southwest side. Because the school is a neighbor, not an owner or an oversight agency, the District has no authority other than advisement, but shares the concerns of Edison parents and staff as well as community residents regarding potential health threats from the proposed "cleanup" of the waste pits. The health and safety of students and staff are our primary concern, therefore the District has tested the air quality at the school using an independent firm and has received findings that the environmental risk data collected during field investigations are well within safety standards as set by the California Air Resource Board and American Industrial Hygiene Association. In addition, drinking water and the swimming pool have been tested by independent firms with results that are also well within safety standards.

You may know that the operator of the cleanup, Project Navigator, has been ordered by the California Department of Toxic Substances Control (DTSC) to suspend the clean-up until enhanced safeguards are implemented. As a result, cleanup stopped June 7. In a letter from the DTSC, these future safeguards "include measures to address odors emanating from the site onto Edison High School and the nearby community." Mitigation efforts to meet these new required mandates are underway now. The DTSC plans a public meeting before any further clean-up is resumed, and will continue to monitor the air around the school on an ongoing basis.

The District is presently meeting with all agencies involved, including South Coast Air Quality Management District (SCAQMD), DTSC and the City of Huntington Beach, and will review and respond to all actions taken by the parties conducting the cleanup of the closed landfill site as a result of the mandates from regulatory oversight agencies. We will continue to ensure student and staff safety and respond immediately to any recommendations from these agencies.

Image courtesy of the City of Huntington Beach

Updates

May 25, 2020
 

Field Work at Ascon Site for Week of March 25, 2020

 

FIELD ACTIVITY AND AIR MONITORING PAUSED FOR MEMORIAL DAY HOLIDAY: The Ascon team honors those we remember on Memorial Day. There was no field activity at Ascon on Friday, May 22, through the Memorial Day holiday, Monday, May 25. Work resumes on Tuesday, May 26. Ascon continues to maintain security on the site. As part of this pause in field activity, DTSC is authorizing Ascon to temporarily modify the air monitoring schedule to allow air quality professionals time with their families.

 

For more details, please visit the Ascon website asconhb.com.

May 15, 2020
May 14, 2020
May 13, 2020
May 12, 2020
May 9, 2020
May 8, 2020
 
The excavation phase of the North Berm repair was completed Friday morning, May 8, at approximately 8:30 am. Beginning Monday, May 11, field work on the North Berm will include final preparation of the slope for installation of longer term cover and stormwater controls.

 

Mobilization for the North Berm repair work began April 13, with excavation starting on April 21. The final treatment on the North Berm slope and the demobilization phase of this work is expected to take at least one week.

May 7, 2020
May 6, 2020
May 5, 2020
May 1, 2020
April 30, 2020
April 29, 2020
April 28, 2020
April 25, 2020
April 24, 2020
April 23, 2020
April 22, 2020

April 21, 2020

April 20, 2020

 

Stabilization work on the North Berm mobilized during the week of April 13, with field activity beginning the week of April 20. For more details, please visit the Ascon website asconhb.com.

 

More information about the stabilization work can be found on the flyer below.

March 27, 2020

 

Please join DTSC for an ONLINE discussion about the proposed upcoming emergency berm repair work at the Ascon Landfill Site.

More information can be found on the flyer below.

March 13, 2020

 

Additional Precautions Taken on Hamilton Ave and on North Berm

Large equipment and traffic barriers are being delivered today at the Hamilton Avenue gate. Traffic barriers are planned for placement along the south shoulder of Hamilton Avenue adjacent to Ascon.

 

A condition known as tension cracking is being monitored along the earthen berm parallel to Hamilton Avenue, known as the North Berm. This area of the 70-year-old berm is unexcavated and is approximately 20-feet in elevation from street level. Ascon's technical team considers this area a medium to high risk for potential slope failure, and has instituted 24-hour inspection to track cracking and settlement.

 

For more details, please visit the Ascon website asconhb.com.

 

 

March 9, 2020

 

Field Work at Ascon Site for Week of March 9, 2020

Sampling for the ongoing groundwater monitoring program will be conducted on Thursday, March 26, including at offsite monitoring well locations in the community both north and east of Ascon.

 

For more details, please visit the Ascon website asconhb.com.

 

 

February 28, 2020

 

Frequently Asked Questions

The Ascon team regularly shares information in response to questions we get from the community. Here are some of the latest. Email us at info@AsconHB.com if you have more questions, or call our hotline at 714-388-1825. Look for more Frequently Asked Questions and explainers about Ascon on AsconHB.com.

January 30, 2020

Stormwater Maintenance in Southeast Detention Basin

Overgrown vegetation (plants) was cleaned out of the southeast detention basin (area closest to Magnolia Street and tank farm property) as part of ongoing maintenance for stormwater management, as reported on the January 27 weekly field activity update.

For more details, please visit the Ascon website asconhb.com.

 

January 25, 2020

Vandalism of Air Monitoring Trailer Near Eader Elementary School

The air monitoring trailer near Eader Elementary School was vandalized on Thursday, January 23, with equipment stolen and trailer apparatus damaged. Air monitoring personnel contacted the Huntington Beach Police Department, and an officer came to the scene to make a report. The Department of Toxic Substances Control was also notified.

Due to the loss of monitoring equipment and damage to the trailer, no air monitoring data will be available for January 24 until replacement equipment can be obtained and installed. We will post an update when air monitoring at this location resumes.

 

December 2, 2019

Hydrant installation on Magnolia Street

Installation of hydrant on Magnolia Street will begin this week, with temporary lane closure. The work includes a flag person for traffic safety. Air monitoring and dust control measures will be implemented during the work.

For more details, please visit the Ascon website asconhb.com.

 

October 2, 2019

Testing at the AES Power Plant

We have been notified that the AES power plant, located along the intersection of Newland St. and Pacific Coast Hwy, is in the last phase of its modernization project. As part of the last phase, they will be conducting tests, which include the release of steam. These tests will begin on October 3, last several weeks, and occur anytime between the hours of 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. During the tests, you will see large steam plumes and hear hissing sounds.

For more information, please contact AES at 888-372-5633.

September 30, 2019

Air Quality Monitor Installed at Edison

The air quality monitoring station has been installed at Edison High School. The station will be monitored by DTSC and air quality monitoring data can be viewed on the DTSC website, EnviroStor.

For more details, please visit the Ascon website asconhb.com.

Air Quality Monitor

Air Quality Monitor

 

September 24, 2019

Community Air Quality Monitoring installation this week

August 28, 2019

16-foot Barrier Fence Installation

The installation of a 16-foot barrier fence at the Ascon landfill has begun. The work includes clearing vegetation and existing fencing, and placing temporary fence panels until the final barrier is installed.

Beginning on September 3, traffic will be redirected at the intersection of Hamilton and Magnolia to allow work trucks direct access to the area under construction. This traffic control is under the direction of the City of Huntington Beach, and we expect that the work could impact drivers around the school, particularly around drop off and pick up times. We have been assured that uniformed flagmen will be in the streets ensuring driver safety, and expect the work to take up to eight weeks. The bike lane along Magnolia will be closed during this time, as well as one of the Magnolia southbound lanes.

We are continuously monitoring driver safety around the school and in our student lots, and we will stay aware of any issues related to this work and keep you informed.

For more details, please visit the Ascon website asconhb.com.

Ascon Barrier Fence
 

 

August 21, 2019

16-foot Barrier Fence Installation Starting

 

August 1, 2019

Letter from DTSC confirms no risks to public health and no offsite soil or groundwater impacts

A letter from the California Department of Toxic Substances Control (DTSC) has confirmed that "air monitoring results do not indicate a threat to public health" and that "no off-site soil or groundwater impacts have been detected or are anticipated."

 

July 26, 2019

Maintenance work planned for Pit F tent on Monday, July 29

Maintenance work is planned on the Pit F tent (large white tent near Magnolia Street) on Monday, July 29. Workers may be seen installing intake louvers, on the east side of the tent as part of preparation for future work.

This activity involves no disturbance of soil or use of heavy equipment, and is not expected to be noisy. The work is expected to last one day or less.

Source Ascon

 

July 24, 2019

Installation of 16-foot barrier fence at Ascon landfill site

The Ascon Landfill Site project is preparing to install a 16-foot high barrier fence along two residential-facing public streets, Magnolia Street and Hamilton Avenue. Construction is scheduled to begin in mid to late July 2019 and continues through late August 2019. This work is being done to provide an additional shield for the community during the excavation phase of the final cleanup of the landfill. For more information, visit the Ascon website.

 

July 11, 2019

Local agencies meet with regulatory departments to discuss Ascon mitigation plans moving forward

Representatives from South Coast Air Quality Management District, California Department of Toxic Substances Control (DTSC), Ascon, the Huntington Beach Union High School District, Huntington Beach City Elementary District, the City of Huntington Beach, and the office of Assemblywoman Cottie Petrie-Norris met this week at City Hall.

The parties discussed DTSC's required health and safety enhancements at the Ascon landfill site to control odors, including tenting, as well as additional safety testing being planned.

A schedule for all future action on the site is expected in the next few weeks, which will be posted on the Ascon website. A 16 foot barrier fence along parts of Hamilton and Magnolia streets, across from Edison High School, will be constructed as part of this schedule. Currently, a landscape cleanup is in progress to prepare the site's perimeter for the barrier fence, which is not part of the mitigation work.

The agencies agreed to meet regularly to discuss upcoming plans, address concerns, and ensure effective communication strategies aimed to keep the neighboring community informed. We will keep parents and staff updated through this website, with links to the Ascon plans and schedules as they are approved.

 

Subscribe to Ascon Updates

Visit asconhb.com and scroll down to sign-up for email updates, alerts, and news about the Ascon landfill site project.
 

24-Hour
Non-Emergency Contact

A 24-hour NON-EMERGENCY public hotline has been established to ensure questions or concerns can be answered promptly. This is not an emergency number. Emergency calls should be directed to 911. The Ascon landfill site hotline number is (714) 388-1825.
 

Who to Contact at DTSC for More Information

For questions about the Ascon landfill site, please contact the following DTSC staff:

Scarlett Xihong Zhai
Project Manager
5796 Corporate Avenue
Cypress, CA 90630‐4732
Email: Xihong.Zhai@dtsc.ca.gov
(714) 484‐5316

Stacey Lear
Public Participation Specialist
5796 Corporate Avenue
Cypress, CA 90630‐4732
Email: Stacey.Lear@dtsc.ca.gov
(714) 484‐5354