National

Oct 5, 2009 6:03 PM by Associated Press

DDT deposit off Southern California will be capped

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency has chosen a $50 million strategy to place a cap of clean material on a vast deposit of DDT and PCBs on the ocean floor off Southern California.

Keith Takata, EPA's Superfund director for the region, said Monday the cap will be placed over the most contaminated sediment on what's known as the Palos Verdes Shelf.

DDT is a now-banned pesticide. PCBs are toxic chemical compounds. The contamination occurred from the 1950s until the early '70s.

DDT from a manufacturer and PCBs from other industrial operations flowed through Los Angeles County's sanitation system and collected along nine miles of seafloor off the Palos Verdes Peninsula.

The contaminants are too deep for human contact but are a risk to people who eat fish from the area.

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