Contractor removes contaminated soil from NM base

Created: 08/07/2014 4:54 PM
By: SUSAN MONTOYA BRYAN, Associated Press

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (AP) - A crew is busy excavating tons of soil from Kirtland Air Force Base as part of a multifaceted, long-term effort to keep a huge plume of spilled jet fuel contaminants from reaching some of the city's drinking water wells.

Officials say the goal of the excavation is to remove 1,700 cubic yards of soil from an area where the fuel leak originated decades ago. The work began earlier this summer and will continue through mid-September.

So far, officials say the excavated soil doesn't meet hazardous levels that would require it to be shipped to a special landfill.

New Mexico environmental regulators and the agency that provides drinking water to the Albuquerque metropolitan area have both called on the Air Force to step up its efforts to clean up the plume.

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