The Mid-America Tanning Company Site is located five miles south of the City of Sergeant Bluff, Woodbury County, in western Iowa. The Site facilities were used to process animal hides (curing and tanning) under several company names throughout much of the 1970s and 1980s. Due to the release of hazardous substances at the property, the Site was placed on the National Priorities List pursuant to CERCLA in 1989 for remediation.
The Site covers 98.7 acres and contains a 28-acre wetland. This wetland was contaminated with wastewater liquids discharged from the curing and tanning facilities. The wastewater liquids contained heavy metals. High concentrations of toxic heavy metals such as chromium were detected in the wetland’s surface water, sediments, aquatic plants and waterfowl tissue collected from the Site. Ecological risks and injury to wetland dependent migratory birds were predicted due to the heavy metal contamination in the wetland. The wetland was not restored by the remedial actions at the Site. The wetland is expected to recover naturally over the long term.