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Doheny Supplies Cleanup a Model for Other Brownfields: DEQ

Doheny Supplies is changing the way Michigan’s Department of Environmental Quality views environmental remediation and economic development.

Doheny Supplies has changed the way MDEQ views environmental remediation and economic development.
Doheny Supplies has changed the way MDEQ views environmental remediation and economic development.

Doheny Supplies in Northville has figured out a way to intertwine environmental management and economic growth.

Following a decades-long cleanup effort, the Doheny site has been successfully cleaned up. Doheny Drive was once home to General Oil, a site that housed waste oil lagoons among other pollution sources, the Observer & Eccentric reports.

Last week, MDEQ Director Dan Wyant and several members of his staff toured the Northville site to get a better look at the improvements that have been made.

“This is a good example of state and local government working together with private business to cleanup a problem site,” Wyant said.

“We’re so proud of this project and so is DEQ,” said Jack Doheny, who has built the world’s largest sewer cleaning and maintenance equipment dealer organization at the former General Oil site. “It really shows what cooperation and partnership can do.”

The cleanup project spanned 20 years and included $1 million from the Clean Michigan Initiative. About 80 percent of the costs were recovered from settlement negotiations with General Oil, the newspaper said.

Steve Hoin, MDEQ’s project manager, said the issues on the site were mainly due to the release of thousands of gallons of waste oil, some of which migrated to the neighboring Mill Pond.

Hoin said the funds were provided in stages, allowing for phased in remedition. A capture system for oil was installed and a large amount of soil was removed from the site.

But the overall success of the site has been because Doheny expanded rather than relocated because of the problems.

Gov. Rick Snyder is interested in using the Doheny project as an blueprint for other pollution ridden areas throughout the state.


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