The federal Environmental Protection Agency has awarded the Upper San Gabriel Valley Municipal Water District a contract for $402,205 to help EPA investigate ground water contamination in the San Gabriel Valley.
The district, which is based in El Monte and serves 17 cities, will conduct community relations programs and provide technical assistance. The EPA study will attempt to determine the extent of ground water contamination by chlorinated hydrocarbons and develop cleanup methods.
Contamination was first discovered in 1979. Testing since than has identified more than 60 wells that have such high concentrations of trichloroethylene, perchloroethylene and other compounds that the water cannot be used or must be treated or blended before delivery to customers.
Judith Ayres, EPA regional administrator, said the contract with the Upper San Gabriel Valley Municipal Water district is the first allocation of Superfund money to a local government agency. One of the EPA's national contractors will be employed to carry out the ground water investigation in cooperation with the water district.