Public lands in the Salt Lake Field Office (SLFO) provide a variety of opportunities and uses. However, some activities on or adjacent BLM property have led to the release of oil or hazardous materials which threaten public safety and the environment. BLM has worked closely with other Federal and State agencies following all applicable and relevant requirements to clean up contamination on or adjacent public lands. Releases of hazardous materials generally are due to commercial activities, illegal activities, or emergency situations.
The predominant hazardous waste sites on the public lands in the SLFO have resulted from current or historic commercial uses, such as, mining, milling, mineral processing, and military activities/training. BLM has received funding from the to address hazardous materials (hazmat) at historic mining sites at Manning Canyon near Fairfield, Jacobs Smelter, near Stockton, and mining claims site near Park City, Utah. BLM also works with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Utah Department of Environmental Quality, Hill Air Force Base, and the Environmental Protection Agency to clean up unexploded munitions and other hazardous, toxic, radiologic waste associated with military activities located on Formerly Used Defense sites.
An increasing number of waste sites on the public land are due to illegal activity such as dumping unmarked drums, petroleum, lead batteries, computers, pesticides, or other hazardous waste; wire burning; and activities related to illegal drug labs.
The BLM’s response to a discovery of a release of hazardous waste on public land is either by a “time critical” (more than 6 months) or “non-time critical” (less than 6 months) response action which includes the appropriate notifications, site evaluations, and the appropriate final removal action involving the contamination as required under the National Contingency Plan.