Army Corps plans to clean up contaminated soil at WWII sites in the Unalaska Valley

Representatives from the US Army Corps of Engineers said they plan to remediate half a dozen World War II contaminated sites in the Unalaska Valley this fall.

They’ve made slow but steady progress to remediate once-used defense sites — or FUDS — across the island for decades.

The sites cleared in the coming months were underground facilities used to store fuel tanks, which contaminated the ground with petroleum.

Rena Flint, who manages the project, said the body was coordinating entry rituals with landowners for six underground storage tank sites of former World War II buildings. Sites range from residences to vacant land owned by the city or Ounalashka Corp.

The body must also ensure that the cleanup will cause no more environmental damage than the contaminated soil itself. This includes determining if removal of contaminated soil could threaten wildlife.

“Is that a finding of no significant effects, like going forward with the project, we’re doing a good thing cleaning up these little oil-contaminated sites?” Flint said. “Or whoa, whoa, whoa, the actual business affects the environment more negatively.”

The environmental examination of the body revealed no significant threat to the valley, but it the report is made available to the public for review and comment.

The public comment period ends on June 11.