Holden has provided an update in its ongoing environmental review first announced in November of 2011. The review now has an EPA-accredited contamination auditor to manage the investigation, which was originally put in place after the discovery of historical ground water contamination of 18 to 20 meters at Holden’s Elizabeth manufacturing site.
The latest testing discovered TCE vapor in the soil at a depth of 1.5 – 2.0 meters below the ground in the area to the north of the plant. TCE, or trichloroethene, is an industrial-grade chemical that has been used as a metal cleaner and degreaser in industrial applications; it also has other uses, such as in dry-cleaning. However, Holden states that it has not used the chemical at the Elizabeth plant “for many years”, although the GM arm did use it as part of the manufacturing processes at some point in the past.
Holden will conduct further testing to determine the full extent of the damage as it works with the EPA and keeps all involved parties, including employees, the local community, and business partners, informed of further developments. The Roaring Lion has also personally contacted residents in the area to make them aware of the situation.
“When we receive further test results we will take the appropriate actions,” said Holden Executive Director of Manufacturing Richard Phillips.