BETHPAGE, NY — Northrop Grumman recently launched the next phase of soil cleanup at Bethpage Community Park.
On Aug. 26, the global aerospace and defense technology company turned on heating equipment to warm the soil beneath Bethpage Community Park — marking a major milestone toward returning the ball field to community use, the company announced in a news release.
The technology will warm the soil over a six-month period to vaporize the chemicals found deep in the soil. The company’s processing equipment will vacuum the vapor, scrub the chemicals from the vapor, and release the treated air to the atmosphere.
“This process is a proven, safe and widely-used method across the State of New York that does not present any risk to the community,” the company wrote.
Northrop Grumman’s work is being conducted with approval from the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (NYSDEC) and the New York State Department of Health. On Aug. 21, Northrop Grumman received approval from the NYSDEC to begin the heating. After the six-month heating, two months will be needed for the soil to cool and for retesting to confirm the process worked. This is scheduled to be done by mid-2021.
The contamination was caused by a plume of toxic water due to industrial waste dumping from U.S. Navy and Northrop Grumman manufacturing facilities. The contaminated water led to a New York State Department of Health investigation into several cancer cases in Bethpage, Newsday reported.