Guam- The Guam Community College (GCC) and the Guam Environmental Protection Agency have entered into a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) to clean up the school’s firing range.
For over 25 years, GCC has provided the island’s law enforcement community with free firing range services, but the lead in the spent cartridges and the residual chemicals left behind pose a threat to the water lens under the range.
GCC president Mary Okada says a site investigation is needed to assess the damage and the mitigation effort that’s needed. GCC landed a $5-thousand dollar grant from the National Rifle Association to get that done.
Following the assessment, under the terms of the MOU, Guam EPA will provide $25,000 to GCC to get the clean up started. But GEPA Administrator Eric Palacios expects more work, and more money will still be needed.
“After we obtained that grant, we felt it was necessary to take a look at what we have here on campus and figure out some way we can do some mitigation and clean up,” said Okada.
“It’ll get the ball rolling on what I imagine will be a much larger project in the very near future,” said Palacios. “It’ll make sure that whatever environmental assessment needs to be conducted will be conducted. After which, we’ll have a better idea of what else needs to be done.”
Once the project is put out to bid and a formal assessment is made, Okada believes it could take 3-6 months to complete. The data collected from site assessment may be used to apply for additional grants.