The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency is seeking public comment on proposed environmental regulations to address groundwater, soil and vapor contamination at the Northrop Grumman facility in Albemarle County.

The regulations have been crafted after more than 10 years of testing, studies and monitoring.

According to federal documents, the facility required several remediation measures in the 1980s and 1990s through the Virginia Department of Environmental Quality.

The company agreed in January 2008 to have the EPA identify any other necessary measures it should take.

The EPA examined six areas on the property, which sits on U.S. 29 near Hydraulic Road.

The major finding was that two types of vapor that can cause cancer — tetrachloroethene and trichloroethene — had the potential to enter the manufacturing building during heating seasons at levels outside EPA regulations.

The EPA is proposing that the company install a vapor intrusion control system to ensure gases don’t enter the manufacturing building and follow EPA guidelines for operating and maintaining the system.

The EPA also found soil and groundwater contamination, but noted that the property isn’t a residential use and the water is not used for consumption and poses a minimal threat to human safety.

The EPA is proposing that Northrop Grumman restrict future land use on the property and that groundwater only be used for manufacturing operations. No new wells shall be installed and the company must follow groundwater monitoring and soil management plans.

The company is not being fined. It’s unclear how much it may cost to implement the regulations.

EPA officials couldn’t be reached due to the government shutdown.

Public comments on the proposed regulations will be accepted through Jan. 28.

For more information on the proposal or how to submit comments, visit

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