News Releases from Region 05


Photo of dredge removing sediment in the Great Lakes Dredging equipment conducting maintenance dredging in the navigational channel (Photo Credit: U.S. Army Corps of Engineers)CHICAGO (May 10, 2021) – This week, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency begins dredging contaminated sediment in the St. Louis River Area of Concern at Howards Bay in Superior, Wisconsin. St. Louis River AOC is one of the 43 AOCs identified by the United States and Canada in the mid-1980s as the most environmentally degraded areas in the Great Lakes ecosystem. Sediment in Howards Bay is polluted with contaminants typically associated with fossil fuels such as coal, gasoline and oil. The cleanup extends from Hughitt Slip to the head of Howards Bay near 5th and Main Street. This cleanup effort is a combination of routine navigation dredging along with environmental restoration to remove the contamination. 

A mechanical dredge will remove approximately 75,000 cubic yards of contaminated sediment which will be disposed of at the Wisconsin Point Landfill. A protective barrier layer of soil will cover the contaminated sediment. EPA anticipates the cleanup will be completed by fall 2021.

EPA’s Great Lakes National Program Office is overseeing the $12.1 million cleanup, which is a voluntary project funded by the federal Great Lakes Restoration Initiative and non-federal partners, Fraser Shipyards Inc., Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources, and the city of Superior. GLRI launched in 2010 as a non-regulatory program to accelerate efforts to protect and restore the largest system of fresh surface water in the world.   

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