Hazardous Waste Program

River Cement Co. - Selma Plant dba Buzzi Unicem USA

EPA ID# MOD050232560

DNR Contact:       Sushmita Sharma, PE, 816-251-0703 or 1-800-361-4827
EPA Contact:       Cynthia Hutchison, 913-551-7478 or 1-800-223-0425
Facility Contact:   Brad Williams, 636-931-0900
Last Updated:       August 23, 2013

What’s New

Proposed Remedy Issued: The department issued a Statement of Basis in support of the proposed remedy of no further corrective action with institutional controls at the River Cement facility. The department proposes to release the facility from regulation as a former interim status hazardous waste treatment, storage and disposal facility subject to the corrective action requirements of the Missouri Hazardous Waste Management Law and regulations. The department invites the public to review and offer written comments on the proposed remedy and regulatory release until Sept. 23. 2013.

During the 30-day public comment period, anyone can request a public hearing about the proposed remedy and regulatory release by writing to Sushmita Sharma at the address below. The hearing request must state what issues are to be brought up during the hearing.

The public can review and copy the draft Environmental Covenant, Statement of Basis and supporting documents at the Festus Public Library, 400 W. Main St., Festus, Missouri (during normal business hours) or the agency locations above. Comments on the proposed remedy and regulatory release are more effective if they point out legal or technical issues or provide information that is not in the record. You may submit written comments on the proposed remedy and regulatory release online or by mail to Sushmita Sharma, PE, Missouri Department of Natural Resources, 500 NE Colbern Road, Lee’s Summit, MO 64086.

Facility Description

The River Cement Co. site, doing business as Buzzi Unicem USA, is located on approximately 2,167 acres at 1000 River Cement Road, about three miles south of Festus. The Mississippi River Corp. built the facility in 1963. River Cement Company, a subsidiary of the Mississippi River Corp., began operating the cement plant and limestone quarry at the site in 1965. In 1979, R.C. Cement Co., Inc. purchased the facility. At that time R.C. Cement was 80 percent owned by IFI International S.A. (Luxembourg) and 20 percent by Unicem S.p.A. (Italy). R.C. Cement later became wholly-owned by Unicem S.p.A. In 2000, Unicem merged with Buzzi Cementi to form Buzzi Unicem S.p.A (Italy). In 2003, Buzzi Unicem S.p.A. gained controlling interest in Dyckerhoff AG, which owned, among other companies, Lone Star Industries Inc. In 2004, RC Lonestar Inc., owned by Buzzi Unicem S.p.A. and Dyckerhoff AG, became the US parent company of River Cement. River Cement remains a wholly-owned subsidiary of RC Lonestar Inc. and is licensed to do business in Missouri, and several other states, under the trade name “Buzzi Unicem USA.”

The River Cement site consists of buildings, a laboratory, storage silos, a limestone quarry, a preheater tower with calciner, a rotary kiln, three finish mills, one raw mill, railroad spur tracks, a barge loading facility and sheds used to store cement-related products. The rest of the site is mainly open fields with paved roadways. The railroad spur tracks are currently used for cement transport. The kiln produces clinker, the main ingredient in Portland cement. The cement production process involved drying limestone, clay and sandstone and mixing it with other raw materials containing aluminum, iron and silica. River Cement then crushes and grinds the mixture into a fine powder and feeds the material, in dry powder form, into a preheater/precalciner tower. The powder enters the kiln when it is heated to a point to start the chemical reaction that makes clinker. The clinker is then cooled, stored and later ground with gypsum to make cement.

A byproduct of the cement production process is a fine chalky powder waste known as cement kiln dust. River Cement disposed of the dust, which could contain hazardous constituents, in several on-site landfills. The “old” landfill, which was roughly 400 ft x 3,000 ft x 25-50 ft deep, was located in the southeast corner of the facility. It operated from 1965 to 1982 and received kiln dust, sanitary waste, brick, crushed rock, clay, spent lubricants, general plant debris and similar industrial waste. The kiln dust landfill, which was roughly 1,300 ft x 700 ft by 25-100 ft deep, was located in the northwest corner of the facility. It began operating in 1982 and received pelletized kiln dust until 2009.

A tremendous amount of energy is required in the cement manufacturing process to achieve the extremely high temperatures in the kilns. River Cement uses mainly coke and natural gas to heat their kiln system. From January 1989 to 1997, River Cement used liquid hazardous wastes fuels to supplement its fuel needs. The hazardous waste came from off-site hazardous waste generators and third party hazardous waste blenders. An environmental management firm operated the hazardous waste fuel facility at the site. The hazardous waste fuel facility received the hazardous waste in bulk tanker trucks and railcars. The liquid hazardous wastes were blended with other hazardous waste to achieve the desired characteristics. The resulting wastes were stored in tanks until used as liquid fuel.

River Cement operated one hazardous waste container storage area, with a capacity of 80 fifty-five gallon drums (4,400 gallons); one tank farm consisting of three 22,000-gallon and three 39,000-gallon hazardous waste storage tanks, with a combined capacity of 183,000 gallons; two tank truck offloading areas, with a capacity for three trucks per unloading station; one railcar offloading area; one railcar cleaning area; a direct burn system; a 430-foot high preheater tower with calciner and a 212-foot rotary kiln, as well as the necessary ancillary equipment such as pumps, piping systems and process control systems. River Cement stored and treated characteristic hazardous waste as well as various F-, K-, D-, P-, and U-listed hazardous wastes, as specified in their Part A permit application.

River Cement stopped burning hazardous waste fuels in May 1997. River Cement continued operating the kiln without using hazardous waste fuels until 2009. The kiln was shut down when a new kiln came online. The "old" landfill area is capped with approximately four feet of rock and the facility’s quarry haul road currently crosses this area.

Closure and Corrective Action Status

According to applicable state and federal hazardous waste laws and regulations, all hazardous waste treatment, storage and disposal facilities are required to investigate and clean up releases of hazardous waste and hazardous constituents to the environment at their facility resulting from present and past hazardous waste handling practices. In May 1989, River Cement submitted a Solid Waste Management Unit Review Report to the Missouri Department of Natural Resources, to be inserted in their October 1988 Part B Permit Application. The report identified 19 solid waste management units.

In February 1991, Metcalf & Eddy Inc. performed a Resource Conservation and Recovery Act, or RCRA, Facility Assessment for the site, on behalf of EPA. The assessment was conducted to identify and gather information on actual and potential releases of hazardous waste and hazardous constituents from the solid waste management units and areas of concern to the environment. The final RCRA Facility Assessment Report identified 19 solid waste management units and one area of concern that were recommended for more investigation.

In May 1997, River Cement submitted a notification letter to the department and EPA, indicating that hazardous waste fuels were no longer being used at the facility. River Cement also intended to begin closing the hazardous waste management facility, which included the hazardous waste fuel facility, two cement kilns and hazardous waste fuel feed system piping. The hazardous waste fuel facility included a tank farm, two tank truck unloading areas, a railcar unloading area and a hazardous waste container storage area. In June 1997, River Cement submitted a closure plan to the department, which the department approved on Nov. 25, 1997. Closure occurred in 1998 and the department accepted River Cement’s closure report and certification on Dec. 8, 1998.

On June 30, 1999, the department visited the facility to visually inspect all solid waste management units identified in the RCRA Facility Assessment Report and the permit application that potentially required further corrective action. The inspection was conducted to verify the existing/current locations and the physical integrity of the units. Based on the inspection, the department determined that 11 solid waste management units required further corrective action. The department and River Cement voluntarily entered into a Letter of Agreement on March 11, 2003, in an effort to simplify and streamline the corrective action process for the remaining solid waste management units identified as requiring further corrective action.

As required by the Letter of Agreement, River Cement conducted a RCRA Facility Investigation to define the horizontal and vertical extent of any contamination at the solid waste management units. River Cement sumbitted a RCRA Facility Investigation Report to the department and EPA in July 2005, with an addendum report in May 2009. The reports presented the results of the surface water, sediment, surficial soil, subsurface soil and groundwater samples that were collected at the facility. The groundwater sample results did not show contamination above acceptable standards. Based on the sample results and data screening from the industrial and kiln dust landfills, no further action was determined to be necessary in these areas. In the "old" landfill area, arsenic was detected in soil and sediment samples above screening levels for both residential and industrial use; however they were below natural background concentrations in Jefferson County. Benzo(a)anthracene was detected in soil samples above screening levels for residential use, but below screening levels for industrial use. Benzo(a)pyrene was detected in one sediment sample above screening levels for both residential and industrial use. The "old" landfill area is currently capped with approximately four feet of rock and the facility’s quarry haul road crosses this area. The RCRA Facility Investigation Report Addendum proposed executing an Environmental Covenant for the "old" landfill area, in order to place activity and use limitations on the property to address the contamination above unrestricted use levels. The department approved the report addendum on Feb. 15, 2011.

The department prepared a Statement of Basis that summarizes the department’s basis of support for the proposed remedy of no further corrective action with institutional controls at the River Cement site. The institutional control will be an enforceable Environmental Covenant with activity and use limitations, executed by the department and River Cement, for the "old" landfill area. These restrictions will ensure that unacceptable exposure to residual contamination do not occur in the future. The Environmental Covenant will be filed with the Jefferson County Recorder of Deeds upon approval of the proposed remedy.

The department proposes to release the facility from regulation as a former interim status hazardous waste treatment, storage and disposal facility subject to the corrective action requirements of the Missouri Hazardous Waste Management Law and regulations. The public is invited to review and comment on the proposed remedy and regulatory release during a 30-day public comment period which began Aug. 24, 2013, and ends Sept. 23, 2013.

Hazardous Waste Permit Status

River Cement previously operated a hazardous waste fuel facility and two cement kilns under the interim status portions of the federal and state hazardous waste laws and regulations, 40 CFR Part 265 and 10 CSR 25-7.265. When Congress passed the hazardous waste federal law in 1980, all existing facilities that treated, stored or disposed of hazardous waste in a manner that would necessitate a hazardous waste permit were required to get such a permit. Because of the large number of existing facilities, Congress set up requirements which allowed these facilities to operate temporarily under “interim status” until they received their permit.

River Cement submitted their RCRA Part A Permit Application on Nov. 24, 1986, and RCRA Part B Permit Application in October 1988, with revisions submitted in December 1996. In May 1997, River Cement decided not to continue the hazardous waste permitting process and to close the hazardous waste management facility. River Cement is not subject to the permitting requirements of the Missouri Hazardous Waste Management Law or federal Hazardous and Solid Waste Amendments for post-closure care because they “clean closed” the interim status hazardous waste management units.

River Cement is subject to corrective action because they completed closure of the interim status hazardous waste management units after the effective date of the federal Hazardous and Solid Waste Amendments. In an effort to simplify and streamline the corrective action process, the department and River Cement voluntarily entered into a Letter of Agreement on March 11, 2003. The department determined that River Cement adequately addressed all issues associated with solid waste management units or areas of concern. As a result, the department issued a Statement of Basis in support of the proposed remedy of no further corrective action with institutional controls. The department proposed to release the facility from regulation as a former interim status hazardous waste treatment, storage and disposal facility subject to the corrective action requirements of the Missouri Hazardous Waste Management Law and regulations. The public has been invited to review and comment on the proposed remedy and regulatory release before the department makes the final decisions.