KINGSTON – Central Hudson Gas & Electric Corporation has completed cleanup activities on the site of a former Manufactured Gas Plant (MGP) on North Street and adjacent to the Rondout Creek in the City of Kingston. A project completion ceremony took place at the waterfront site last Thursday to recognize the significant accomplishment.
“We’re very pleased to have completed this important cleanup project, and in doing so help improve waterfront access adjacent to the site on North Street,” said Central Hudson President and C.E.O. Michael L. Mosher. “We especially thank the City of Kingston, Ulster County and nearby residents for their cooperation and assistance during our remedial efforts.”
City of Kingston Mayor Steven Noble commented, “This project is good for the Hudson River, good for the environment and good for our community.”
“This project has made Kingston a cleaner, safer and more enjoyable place to work, live and visit,” said Kelly Turturro, Regional Director of the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation.
MGPs were used throughout the country from the mid-1800s through the early to mid-1900s to produce gas for light, heating and cooking. In New York State alone, more than 300 MGPs were built and operated by local gas companies, and were eventually decommissioned when natural gas was first introduced in the 1940s and 1950s through the interstate pipeline system.
Contaminants related to this former industrial site are typically found at the locations of MGPs, and Central Hudson, in conjunction with the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (NYSDEC), is participating in the state’s Brownfield Cleanup Program for the property. As part of this program, an approved remediation plan to remove the contaminants was developed, approved and implemented.
The former MGP in Kingston was operated by Central Hudson and predecessor companies from the late 1890s until decommissioning and dismantling in the late 1950s. The plant produced gas from coal to meet the lighting, cooking and heating needs of the City of Kingston and surrounding areas until the introduction of natural gas to the region. Some of the by-products of the manufacturing process were found at the property and surrounding areas, including creek sediments.
The site is approximately 1.7 acres in size and is adjacent other industrial and commercial properties, including a former scrap yard and oil storage facility. The property is currently used by Central Hudson to operate and maintain natural gas pipeline facilities. The area in the vicinity of the former plant has been in continual industrial use by other parties since the early 1800s.
Central Hudson has been working cooperatively with the NYSDEC and New York State Department of Health and other regulatory agencies during the past several years to investigate, develop and implement a cleanup plan.
In addition to the North Street site, Central Hudson has addressed or is in the process of addressing five other sites located in the Mid-Hudson Valley, including two sites in Poughkeepsie and one site each in Newburgh, Beacon and Catskill. To date, remediation for all but one site in Poughkeepsie has been completed.
For more information on manufactured gas plants and remediation activities, visit the NYSDEC Web site at www.DEC.NY.gov/chemical/8430.html.