5-17-11: What Do You Do With a Refinery When It Stops Being a Refinery?
Since its inception, Baltimore has been home to industry and business. The layers can go deep—on one piece of property, you may have a refinery, which was built on top of a tannery, which was built on top of something else. And each of those businesses may have left different kinds of contaminants on the site.
That made us wonder: when a commercial or industrial site is left vacant, what sort of impact can it have on the environment? And how is it decided which sites to clean up—and which to leave vacant?
To learn about this, we turn to two people who work with programs that help to assess and clean up sites in Maryland: Gary Suskauer is the Director of the Brownfields Initiative for the Baltimore Development Corporation, and Jim Carroll is the Program Manager for the Maryland Department of the Environment’s Land Restoration Program, who works with Maryland’s Voluntary Cleanup Program.