Neodesha Refinery Site

Site Background

The Neodesha Refinery Site is located in Neodesha, Kansas. The 320-acre site is located on the west side of town, near the Fall River. An oil refinery operated there from approximately 1897 to 1970. The facility consisted of refinery-processing areas, bulk storage tanks, an oil separator pond, settling basins, and a waste disposal area. Past releases of petroleum hydrocarbons have contaminated soil and groundwater within the refinery footprint. Over time, contaminated groundwater migrated away from the former refinery property onto residential and industrial properties in Neodesha. Surface and subsurface soils and groundwater are impacted by contaminants including volatile organic compounds, such as benzene, toluene, ethylbenzene, and xylene (BTEX), semi-volatile organic compounds, and a number of heavy metals including lead and arsenic. Light non-aqueous phase liquid and dissolved phase contaminants are present in groundwater.

Contamination is the subject of a Consent Agreement between the Kansas Department of Health and Environment and Amoco Oil Company (now BP Products North America, BP) (Case Number 90-E-53A), which went into effect in 1990. Under the Consent Agreement, BP is required to investigate the contamination, evaluate remedial actions to address the contamination, and implement the remedial actions specified in KDHE's final Corrective Action Decision. The final remedy for the Neodesha Refinery Site will be determined based on KDHE's review of the Revised Corrective Action Study when submitted in full, and subsequent input from the community during the corrective action decision process.

Interim Measures

Various Interim Remedial Measures have been implemented at the Neodesha Refinery Site to address immediate risks and to prevent further off-site migration of the groundwater plume. Based on earlier investigations, wastes were disposed of, treated, solidified, and then capped at the north edge of the site. Materials from the settling basin bottoms were removed, dried, stabilized, consolidated in the basin at the south edge of the site, and capped. The capped areas are monitored and maintained on an annual basis. On several occasions, hydrocarbon seep areas were excavated and contaminated soil and water was disposed of off-site. Soil excavation activities were conducted to remove asphalt-like material within the Former Tank Site. The excavations near the ballpark in March-April 2000 and April 2003 removed a total of 410 cubic yards of impacted material at an average depth of 4.5 feet. The excavations in the industrial park area took place in April-May 2003 with the removal of 215 cubic yards of impacted material. The excavated material was disposed and the areas were backfilled with clean soil or road base material.

The Phase 1 Air Sparge/Soil Vapor Extraction System was installed near the southern boundaries of the Former Tank Site area in November 2000 to enhance volatilization and biodegradation of dissolved-phased hydrocarbons in the groundwater. The Phase 1 System was operated until August 2002 upon the installation of the Phase 2 System. The Phase 2 Dual-Phase Extraction and LNAPL Recovery System was installed in August 2002 to enhance groundwater remediation in the Former Tank Site source area and offsite areas to the southeast. Groundwater is extracted and treated through an oil-water separator, air stripper, bag filters, and carbon filters. The vapors are treated using a regenerative thermal oxidizer. The treated water is discharged into the Verdigris River.

The Sulfate Addition System, in operation since October 2004, consists of sulfate addition wells to which a solution of sulfate is added twice weekly. The Sulfate Trench, installed in March 2005, is a 100-foot by 2-foot by 8-foot trench that contains gypsum and gravel located to the northwest of MW-9A. The sulfate systems serve to enhance biodegradation of dissolved-phase impacts.

Deed restrictions limiting future use were voluntarily placed on many of the properties formerly occupied by the refinery. A vapor intrusion assessment of three of the schools in Neodesha occurred in March 2008 and indicated that chemicals from the BP Amoco Refinery Site are not currently impacting the air quality of the schools. An additional vapor intrusion evaluation was conducted in 2016 which concluded that no further action needs to be taken to address vapor intrusion at this time.

Current Work

The Neodesha Refinery Site was the subject of extensive litigation between the City of Neodesha and BP between 2007 and 2012. The litigation delayed the implementation of additional investigation and interim measures. Following the Kansas Supreme Court's 2012 ruling, KDHE requested that BP perform the work outlined in the Supplemental Investigation Work Plan for the Former Refinery at Neodesha, Kansas. BP was unable to obtain the property access needed to implement the work plan. In October 2013 KDHE requested access so that KDHE could perform this work using an independent contractor. Negotiations regarding access were completed in the summer of 2014 and BP agreed to reimburse KDHE for the cost of the investigation. From September 2014 through December 2014 KDHE and its consultant, Burns and McDonnell Engineering Company implemented the work plan. Field activities included laser-induced fluorescence (LIF) to provide detailed information about the distribution of subsurface petroleum contamination, soil cores to corroborate the LIF findings, groundwater sampling, and installation of additional monitoring wells to provide information concerning the groundwater plume. KDHE approved the Supplemental Investigation Report for the site.

In March 2017, BP conducted sampling to delineate lead-impacted soils in certain areas of the site. The report is currently under review by KDHE. In August 2017, a sediment and surface water investigation took place to evaluate potential impacts to the Fall River and Verdigris River caused by groundwater discharging through drainage ditches, as well as near the former oil separator pond area. Results of the investigation indicate that there are no significant or adverse effects to the Fall River surface water or sediments from the former refinery operations.

Additional Information

For additional information, please contact:

Levi Crooke, Professional Geologist Supervisor

Phone: 785-296-0225

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