Final cleanup at contaminated Alaska junkyard delayed to weigh options

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JUNEAU, Alaska (AP) - The state is postponing final cleanup plans at a former junkyard site in southeast Alaska to see if funding can be secured for disposal in the Lower 48.

Plans have called for building a site on state-owned land on Wrangell Island to dispose of the treated, lead-contaminated soil.

But the state Department of Environmental Conservation says it is delaying those plans until April 1, to allow time to explore other ideas and funding.

Site preparation on Wrangell Island is expected to continue in case additional money is not secured.

The estimated cost to build and secure a local site and to haul the material is $5.7 million. Alternately, costs to ship and dispose of the soil in the Lower 48 have been estimated around $12 million.