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WAYNE, N.J. (AP) — Federal officials say a six-acre plot in northern New Jersey that was once contaminated with radioactive thorium has been officially removed from the nation's Superfund list.
The former W.R. Grace and Co. site in Wayne, unused since 1971, underwent $125 million in cleanup efforts over 20 years.
Officials in the Passaic County community plan to turn the site into a dog park and playground. It had been on the Superfund list for nearly three decades before its removal was formally announced on Tuesday.
From 1948 to 1971, the W.R. Grace site was used to extract thorium and other elements from monazite ore. Initially, the property was owned by another firm, and thorium was used in the manufacture of gas lanterns.
Grace ceased operations at the site in 1971 and decontaminated the property in 1974 to the standards in place at the time.
But an aerial survey conducted by the state in 1980 showed elevated radiation levels there and at other nearby sites. That discovery and subsequent surveys prompted the EPA to add the site to the Superfund list.
New Jersey has 112 active Superfund sites, more than any other state.