Home > environment > NEC clean-up begins

NEC clean-up begins

[Press Release]

The Northcoast Environmental Center [broke] ground this Thursday on cleanup of the site of its former headquarters on Ninth Street in Arcata, which has been vacant since the 2001 fire that razed the former NEC and adjacent buildings.

For the past 11 years, the site has remained undeveloped while undergoing Phase I and Phase II assessments, which consisted of drilling and sampling both the soil and water to determine the range and levels of contamination. The NEC’s subcontractor will ‘dig and haul’ to remove the most contaminated soil, which will then be hauled to a certified toxic waste facility and disposed of appropriately. The remaining soil at the site will then be injected with a remediation agent, which is intended to modify the chemistry of the contamination so that it becomes less toxic more quickly.

Following the cleanup, the site will be monitored for approximately 12 to 18 months. To determine that the process is working as intended, permanent sampling wells have been installed on the property. Ongoing monitoring data and results will be sent directly to the North Coast Regional Water Quality Control Board.

Bob Morris, NEC’s Trinity County representative, has shepherded the Brownfields cleanup. “After 2 years of planning and fundraising, it is heartening to finally be doing the work on the ground that will lead to the final phase of monitoring,” he said.

The NEC had occupied the Ninth  Street site since 1982, when it purchased the building that once functioned as a dry cleaning business. Typical to this industry, the owners used a chemical call Perchloroethylene (PCE or PERC) as part of the dry cleaning process. Over the tenure of the business, this chemical leaked into the soil below, leaving the subsequent landowner to do the clean-up. The PERC levels in the soil are relatively low, and the NEC had been given approval to “cap-and-build,” which would have entombed the soil under a cement slab, allowing the property to be sold ‘as-is’ for the next owner to legally build upon. Following that course of action would have left the soil contaminated, potentially impacting groundwater, and possibly Humboldt Bay.

The NEC Board of Directors felt that the only ethical course of action was to procure this grant and go through the steps to ensure the lot is clean before selling it. “Not only is this the right move environmentally, but it is also a wise move fiscally, since the result will be a saleable lot near the Arcata Plaza,” Morris added.

Larry Glass, president of NEC’s Board of Directors, said, “I am proud that NEC is maintaining our commitment to clean up the contamination that we unknowingly inherited, despite the economic times that have required us to trim some staff and programming. That we continue to receive grants and contributions from the public is a sign that our work remains an important contribution to the well-being of the community.”

The Brownfields Grant awarded the NEC $200,000 for clean-up, requiring $40,000 in matching funds. The NEC has thus far received $29,600 or 74% of goal. Earmarked contributions can be sent to the NEC at P.O. Box 4259, Arcata, CA 95518.

  1. Anonymous
    October 28, 2011 at 7:11 am

    Meanwhile, Rob Arkley & Security National continue to give the middle finger to Baykeeper, the Coastal Commission, the City of Eureka & the State of California

  2. Anonymous
    October 28, 2011 at 7:43 am

    Grants. Of course. You folks hate paying for yourselves.

  3. Newman and Brady
    October 28, 2011 at 7:45 am

    Marina Center Now! Oh wait, maybe in a few years because…

  4. Newman and Brady
    October 28, 2011 at 7:47 am

    Ya, grants! That’s it. Marina Center Now…if Rob had money and grants like the NEC we’d have a Marina Center Now. It’s all the fault of the NEC. Ya, that’s it.

  5. Anonymous
    October 28, 2011 at 8:58 am

    Irony? Larry Glass helps lead the NEC clean up a contaminated site. Meanwhile in Eureka, Marian Brady, the council member who beat Glass on the campaign promise of cleaning up the Balloon Track, has occupied a seat for a year now and the BT stands as polluted as ever.

  6. October 28, 2011 at 9:23 am

    Marian Brady on the Balloon Track: “Clean it up now!”


  7. Anonymous
    October 28, 2011 at 9:24 am

    Well maybe if LG and pals should quit blocking the clean up at the BT. Hypocrites.

  8. October 28, 2011 at 9:28 am

    Oh, yes, that big, mean, all-powerful Larry Glass is blocking the clean-up of the Balloon Track.

    Poor, poor Rob Arkley and Marian Brady are powerless to stop him.

  9. Anonymous
    October 28, 2011 at 9:58 am

    I never realized LG & pals had that much power 9:24

  10. Anonymous
    October 28, 2011 at 10:03 am

    LG and pals are hypocrites. Its pretty simple. The BT needs to be cleaned up and developed, we need the marsh area restored and trails and the anti crowd needs to get with the program instead of naysaying.

  11. Anonymous
    October 28, 2011 at 10:13 am

    Arkley is a big boy, why does he need to blame everyone other than his organization for this problems?

    SHould we blame the latest SN bankruptcy on Glass and co. as well?

  12. Anonymous
    October 28, 2011 at 10:19 am

    So why doesn’t it get done 10:03?
    You voted out Larry Glass, you passed the Marina Center Now initiative, and the Arkley-supported frivolous lawsuits have been dismissed.
    Are you claiming it can’t be cleaned up because some bloggers are “naysayers”? Are you really too partisan to see that Arkley (and shell companies) are dragging their feet on this one?
    You guys are really funny.

  13. Anonymous
    October 28, 2011 at 10:24 am

    Nah. Its the NEC, Paykeeper and CC blocks that have stalled it you silly putz. My you are soooo playful this morning 10:19.


  14. Anonymous
    October 28, 2011 at 10:32 am

    The Marina Center project has been such a failure. Why hasn’t Rob fired Randy Gans at this point?

  15. Anonymous
    October 28, 2011 at 10:36 am

    Thank you hugs. your commentary really helps your cau$e. You should continue to double down on the juvenile utterings.

  16. 69er
    October 28, 2011 at 10:45 am

    It is good to see NEC being active in the clean up, thanks for grants. I hope you all realise where the grant money comes from????

  17. Anonymous
    October 28, 2011 at 10:52 am

    Oh 10:36 let’s double down then you silly bugger. My only cause is to see the blight gone at the BT so when I drive past it to work it looks nice. Oh and add to that I would like to take lunch hour walks on the proposed trails. I would like y’alls nasty attacks and divisiveness to stop. I would like jobs and not illegal dope grows. I would like a return to small community tolerance and respect.

    Hugs and double hugs.

  18. Anonymous
    October 28, 2011 at 10:56 am

    Grants come from taxes and Arkley’s money comes from a parasitic mortgage industry. Either way, the lower 99% are footing the bill. Meanwhile the responsible parties, such as Southern Pacific, walk away.

  19. Anonymous
    October 28, 2011 at 11:04 am

    Yep. And the NEC gets a walk too if I read this correctly. They get a grant to do the work that as a property owner they are bound to do by law.

    Triple hugs.

  20. Blame Game
    October 28, 2011 at 11:08 am

    If this is what you want, then lobby the owners to get off their ass and get it done. Instead they keep jockeying for a half-ass cleanup and hope their legal maneuvers will allow them to clean up the property on the cheap. If they’d abided by the various governmental requests, they could have started the clean up MONTHS AGO. If your “only cause” is truly clean up, then you should really look into what could be done NOW.
    Take off your blinders and recognize that Arkley would rather spend $100 dollars fighting a system than $10 complying with a system he doesn’t like. I don’t like a lot of laws and regulations, but I usually comply because it is easier and cheaper.
    I would also like to walk those trails – and I’m sick of the blame game you and other’s conitnue to play. Watch the video above, Brady plays the blame game and tells us a citizens’ initiative will get the project going. I imagine she has someone new to blame, now that the initiative is passed and Arkley continues to drag his feet.

  21. Blame Game
    October 28, 2011 at 11:10 am

    If you read correctly, unlike Southern Pacific Trans Company, NEC did not cause the site contamination. The former owners got the walk.

  22. Anonymous
    October 28, 2011 at 11:13 am

    See that’s where we disagree. You seem to want everything your way. I am A OK with the clean up and project. Why has it taken 10 years for the NEC to get their own land cleaned up? Oh yeah, its because they demanded that somebody else pay for it.

    That’s just wrong

  23. Anonymous
    October 28, 2011 at 11:20 am


    Arkley didn’t cause the contamination either.

    Now how’s about a stop to all of this. I am not buying the line that this is about the clean up for you folks. It is about stopping any development. Its about Pierson. Its about time for you folks to support this clean up and project and its about time to stop this winner take all mentality.

    Frankly, most of Eureka is sick of it and we are getting more and more alienated by it.

    Hugs, and a pat on the fanny.

  24. Anonymous
    October 28, 2011 at 11:33 am

    Specifically why has the cleanup not occurred? What are the specific barriers? Why didn’t it begin last month or the month before?
    I don’t give a rat’s ass about the development – it will just be one more junky strip mall in Eureka -I really don’t care, and I don’t work for Piersons, NEC, baykeeper, or Larry Glass.
    I DO care about the foot dragging to clean up this site and I do care that it is cleaned up to safe levels so my kids can go there someday.
    Assessment and remediation at this site has been going on since at least 1988 – check the cleanup status history at the link below. The fact is that if Arkley wanted to play be the rules, clean up work could have started long ago.


  25. Anonymous
    October 28, 2011 at 11:45 am

    Arkley has no cash to fix it right now. Only cash for fundraisers and other luxuries.

  26. Anonymous
    October 28, 2011 at 11:51 am

    Oh and hugs
    – here’s a handkerchief to wipe the Arkley brown off your nose.

  27. Anonymous
    October 28, 2011 at 1:22 pm

    OK -PJ,RS,JK,PN and the rest of the club, what the hell!!!! A cap, Really! You all suck to roof tops and waiting till you get public mony to pay for your problem. If you had “ANY” class what so ever you would demand the state of the art clean up of your own back yard. Again, what the hell!!!!!

  28. Anonymous
    October 28, 2011 at 1:45 pm

    1:22 – reading comprehension test – which statement describes the action being undertaken and which describes a process that is not going to be done (hint: the word “cap” is in the statement regarding the process that was not done):

    “…the NEC had been given approval to “cap-and-build,” which WOULD HAVE entombed the soil under a cement slab, allowing the property to be sold ‘as-is’ for the next owner to legally build upon. Following that course of action WOULD HAVE left the soil contaminated, potentially impacting groundwater, and possibly Humboldt Bay.”

    The NEC’s subcontractor WILL ‘dig and haul’ to remove the most contaminated soil, which WILL then be hauled to a certified toxic waste facility and disposed of appropriately.
    “The NEC Board of Directors felt that the only ethical course of action was to procure this grant and go through the steps to ensure the lot is clean before selling it.”

  29. Anonymous
    October 28, 2011 at 1:50 pm

    Ethics, LOL! What will sneaky Pete do with the $$$$$$$ ?

  30. Anonymous
    October 28, 2011 at 1:54 pm

    Is it really less risky for the environment to haul that stuff to Red Bluff?

  31. Anonymous
    October 28, 2011 at 2:41 pm

    You figure Rob would have found a way to pay off the Coastal Commission by now. They must not be accepting bribes these days.

  32. Not an Expert
    October 28, 2011 at 6:07 pm

    ummm, nice spin people, but the only thing stopping the Balloon Track cleanup is Arkley’s refusal to supply the info the Coastal Commission requested to move forward on the permit hearing.

  33. Anonymous
    October 28, 2011 at 6:34 pm

    and the cash he does not have. cash is needed

  34. Anonymous
    October 28, 2011 at 7:46 pm

    he just needs to follow sneaky Pete from paykeeper/NEC and get public money to foot the bill

  35. Anonymous
    October 28, 2011 at 8:20 pm

    Stop it. Quit being angry and divisive. Quit hating and being Anti. Quit hating anyone who you view as being “better off than you”. Just stop it.

    Jane, mitch, robash, (etc) and you Dick (under every name imaginable) why hate? Stop it folks.

  36. Anonymous
    October 28, 2011 at 8:24 pm

    Pps. GO CARDs. Can we at least say yay?

  37. Anonymous
    October 28, 2011 at 8:29 pm

    CARD’s WIN.

  38. Anonymous
    October 28, 2011 at 8:49 pm

    I am waiting to read how the CARD’s are corporate nazis.

    Go cards. This is so cool.

  39. 69er
    October 28, 2011 at 11:31 pm

    Bound to happen here, hooray Cards!!

  40. Anonymous
    October 29, 2011 at 1:48 am

    Arkley only claims responsibility for his successes. Otherwise, plays the blame game. Where the BT is concerned, he has many excuses and outside entities to hold accountable for his failures.

    Where his current financial woes are concerned, he blames everybody but himself for what were his own decisions and actions. As someone who has had business dealings with Arkley and shared a scotch or two, I know his mind set is to punish and torment those who oppose him in any way, and to do do with relish and spite.

    It seems he has no money to develop the BT, at the moment, let alone perform the clean-up, or pay his taxes, debts and so forth.

    He only has funds to throw expensive political fundraisers and indulge his personal luxuries and desires.

  41. Anonymous
    October 29, 2011 at 8:24 am

    If Arkley is in bankruptcy, aren’t there holds on his money? Can a person under Chap 11 continue to throw their money around for personal whims when they owe a lot of people? If the home in Louisiana is as large and expensive as mentioned here, wouldn’t that be attached?

  42. Anonymous
    October 29, 2011 at 8:32 am

    what? you never heard of the shell game?

  43. Migh Finances
    October 29, 2011 at 1:33 pm

    The BT has nothing to do with this thread, you people take every opportunity to hate Mr. Arkley who actually has a job.

    If you were intelligent and understood economics, business, taxes and history as well as I do, you would know that the poor economy is hurting everyone.

    Mr. Arkley will begin creating more jobs for Humboldt County as soon as his lawsuits are successful and development of more big boxes and subdivisions, (that these new employees can’t afford), will generate more distressed loans that he can buy on the cheap to liquidate. His achievements have notably contributed to today’s exploding growth of Eureka’s rental agency, check cashing, pawn shop, job scalping, bail bond, storage unit, rent-to-own, and recovery home industries.

    You liberals just hate jobs and growth!

  44. Pitchfork
    October 30, 2011 at 9:17 am

    Your right BT has nothing to do with this tread because Arkley bought that property knowing full well how contaminated it was. Arkley thought that he could bully and buy his way out of a clean-up.
    Hows that workin for ya Rob and Randy et al.?

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