Boeing, the Dept. of Energy, and NASA signed agreements to fully clean up all of SSFL’s contamination by 2017, but the cleanup hasn’t begun. Recently, all three have indicated their intent to break their cleanup agreements and leave most of the contamination on the site permanently. The cleanup is now at an impasse, and the stakes couldn’t be higher.
California EPA Secretary Jared Blumenfeld will discuss cleanup efforts on February 13 at a meeting of the SSFL Work Group. The SSFL Work Group was founded in 1989 to educate and engage the community, government agencies, and elected officials in the cleanup. The meeting will include a public Q&A with a panel of experts, community members, and elected officials.
SSFL Work Group Meeting
“SSFL Cleanup Crisis: Finding a Path Forward”
Simi Valley Cultural Arts Center
Thursday, February 13, 2020
6:30 PM Candlelight vigil
7:00 PM SSFL Work Group Meeting
Hosted by SSFL Work Group, Physicians for Social Responsibility- Los Angeles, Committee to Bridge the Gap, Rocketdyne Cleanup Coalition and Parents Against SSFL.
Journalist Harvey Wasserman and Denise Duffield, Associate Director of Physicians for Social Responsibility- L.A. discussed the Woolsey Fire, its implications, and the California and corporate refusals to clean-up the SSFL site, endangering residents daily, in these excerpts from the December 2018 meeting of Americans for Democratic Action – Southern California, in Culver City.
The Woolsey fire started at the Santa Susana Field Laboratory site, and based on helicopter sightings, was likely started by a transformer malfunction and fire at a Southern California Edison substation located there.
From the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA)
NOTE: The Federal Register notice does not give a due date for comments. It says the deadline is 45 days after the date of the Federal Register notice which was October 25. If you wish to submit comments, confirm the due date with NASA at the email address below.
Notice of Availability of the Draft Supplemental Environmental Impact Statement (SEIS) for Soil Cleanup Activities at Santa Susana Field Laboratory
National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA).
Notice of Availability of the Draft Supplemental Environmental Impact Statement (SEIS) to the March 2014 Final Environmental Impact Statement (FEIS) for demolition and environmental cleanup activities for the NASA-administered portion of the Santa Susana Field Laboratory (SSFL), Ventura County, California. This SEIS will cover the soil cleanup activities at NASA’s portion of SSFL.
Pursuant to the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA), as amended, the Council on Environmental Quality Regulations for Implementing the Procedural Provisions of NEPA, and NASA’s NEPA policy and procedures, NASA has prepared a Draft SEIS for soil cleanup activities at SSFL in Ventura County, California. The Draft SEIS has been prepared because there are significant new circumstances relevant to environmental concerns bearing on the proposed action and its impacts. Specifically, the estimated quantity of soil required to be removed has increased substantially since the publication of the 2014 FEIS. This increase has the potential to alter the environmental impacts that were evaluated in the 2014 FEIS. For this reason, NASA has determined it is appropriate to prepare a supplement to the 2014 FEIS.
Interested parties are invited to submit comments, preferably in writing, within forty-five (45) calendar days from the date of publication in the Federal Register of the Notice of Availability of the Draft SEIS on October 25, 2019.
Comments submitted by mail should be addressed to Peter Zorba, SSFL Project Director, 5800 Woolsey Canyon Road, Canoga Park, CA 91304. Comments may be submitted via email to email@example.com. The Draft SEIS may be reviewed at the following locations:
1. Simi Valley Library, 2969 Tapo Canyon Road, Simi Valley, CA 93063, Phone: (805) 526-1735.
2. Platt Library, 23600 Victory Blvd., Woodland Hills, CA 91367, Phone: (818) 340-9386.
3. California State University, Northridge Oviatt Library, 18111 Nordhoff Street, 2nd Floor, Room 265, Northridge, CA 91330, Phone: (818) 677-2285.
4. Department of Toxic Substances Control, 9211 Oakdale Avenue, Chatsworth, CA 91311, Phone: (818) 717-6521.
Citizen scientists are uncovering risks that governments would rather cover up
November 20, 2019
By Cindy Folkers
When reactors exploded and melted down at the Fukushima nuclear power complex in March 2011, they launched radioactivity from their ruined cores into the unprotected environment. Some of this toxic radioactivity was in the form of hot particles (radioactive microparticles) that congealed and became airborne by attaching to dusts and traveling great distances.
However, the Fukushima disaster is only the most recent example of atomic power and nuclear weapons sites creating and spreading these microparticles. Prior occurrences include various U.S. weapons sites and the ruined Chernobyl reactor. While government and industry cover up this hazard, community volunteer citizen science efforts – collaborations between scientists and community volunteers – are tracking the problem to raise awareness of its tremendous danger in Japan and across the globe.
After the Fukushima nuclear disaster began, one highly radioactive specimen, a particle small enough to inhale or ingest, was found in a private home where it should not have been, hundreds of miles from its source, in a vacuum cleaner bag containing simple house dust.
From Physicians for Social Responsibility, Los Angeles
November 9, 2018
THE SANTA SUSANA FIELD LABORATORY (ROCKETDYNE) BURNED IN THE WOOLSEY FIRE, THREATENING TOXIC EXPOSURES FROM CONTAMINATED DUST, SMOKE, ASH AND SOIL. THE DEPARTMENT OF TOXIC SUBSTANCES CONTROL DENIES RISK THAT IT CREATED BY DELAYING THE LONG PROMISED CLEANUP.
For Immediate Release: November 9, 2018
Contact: Denise Duffield, 310-339-9676 or firstname.lastname@example.org, Melissa Bumstead 818-298-3192* or email@example.com,
Last night, the Woolsey fire burned the contaminated Santa Susana Field Laboratory (SSFL), a former nuclear and rocket engine testing site. Footage from local television showed flames surrounding rocket test stands, and the fire’s progress through to Oak Park indicates that much of the toxic site burned.
A statement released by the California Dept. of Toxic Substances Control (DTSC) said that its staff, “do not believe the fire has caused any releases of hazardous materials that would pose a risk to people exposed to the smoke.” The statement failed to assuage community concerns given DTSC’s longtime pattern of misinformation about SSFL’s contamination and its repeated broken promises to clean it up.
“We can’t trust anything that DTSC says,” said West Hills resident Melissa Bumstead, whose young daughter has twice survived leukemia that she blames on SSFL and who has mapped 50 other cases of rare pediatric cancers near the site. Bumstead organized a group called “Parents vs. SSFL” and launched a Change.org petition demanding full cleanup of SSFL that has been signed by over 410,000 people. “DTSC repeatedly minimizes risk from SSFL and has broken every promise it ever made about the SSFL cleanup. Communities throughout the state have also been failed by DTSC. The public has no confidence in this troubled agency,” said Bumstead.
Sen. Bob Hertzberg, nicknamed “Huggy” by colleagues, says he thinks in terms of “the big picture”. 
And he visited Aerojet Rocketdyne April 28:
First stop of the day on my #ValleyVisits tour…thank you for telling us about how you bring #SFVJobs. [1a]
But the “big picture” of the extensive contamination done by Rocketdyne at the former Santa Susana Field Laboratory near Simi Valley doesn’t seem to bother Hertzberg .
Hertzberg has been strangely quiet when experts talk about the devastating impacts of Rocketdyne’s toxic chemicals, like TCE and perchlorate, migrating off-site. Massive amounts of chemicals were burned, dumped into unlined pits, dumped in ravines, and trucked away and dumped in the ocean. These chemicals are spreading and contaminating drinking water wells across the valley and run-off into both Ventura and Los Angeles Counties.
Then there is the massive radioactive contamination from Rocketdyne. In 1959 a serious nuclear accident at SSFL resulted in high levels of radioactivity being vented for weeks, particularly affecting San Fernando Valley residents as well as those of Simi Valley, but without any public notice or evacuations. This was the first of several nuclear accidents there which were kept secret. Radioactive waste was also continually burned and dumped, including plutonium. High levels of radioactive contamination remain on and in the soil. Where is Hertzberg? He isn’t hugging the people of Simi Valley and neighboring communities who are dealing with this issue.
In 2013, a report was published that SSFL clean-up officials were sending highly radioactive waste from the Rocketdyne site to ordinary recycling facilities or dumping it with the knowledge and cooperation of the California Department of Toxic Substances Control (DTSC) and the California Department of Public Health.
Where was Hertzberg?
In 2014, DOE finally agreed to clean up the contamination, and DTSC promised to enforce that. However, now DOE wants to leave 39-99% of the contamination in place, and it is unclear if DTSC will stand by its promise and compel a complete cleanup. If the contamination is not cleaned up, it will cause growing, generational impacts to people and wildlife – a very, very big picture.
Where is Sen. Hertzberg?
Hertzberg has said:
“Get it done or get the heck out of the way is my philosophy. I start out as a holistic thinker. I’m the big picture, holistic thinker…It really boils down to the issue of getting the work done. I am sick and tired of the noise. Sick and tired of the empty promises.” 
“Get it done”? Get what done?
Not the Santa Susana Field Laboratory cleanup. Not accountability. Not recompense for damaged lives. Not standing up for the rights of the public to safety in their homes and in their communities. Not creating new rules for how multinational corporations and public agencies operate in California.
We the public are sick and tired of empty promises, Sen. Hertzberg.