Hackensack, NJ

Hackensack, NJ

The City of Hackensack is home to an estimated 45,248 residents, and it’s located in Bergen County, NJ.

This report will help you become better acquainted with Hackensack and the surrounding area by addressing the following questions:

  • Are there any hazardous sites in Bergen County, NJ?
  • How clean is the air in Bergen County, NJ?
  • What’s the average radon level for homes in Bergen County, NJ?
  • Is the water in Bergen County, NJ safe to drink?

Hazardous Sites near Hackensack, NJ

There are eight Superfund sites in Bergen County, NJ. Superfund sites, like Scientific Chemical Processing in Carlstadt, NJ, are areas that have been contaminated with hazardous substances. If not for the cleanup efforts orchestrated by the EPA, these sites could endanger people living in nearby communities.

The EPA uses the Hazardous Ranking System (HRS) to quantify the risk a contaminated site poses to human health and the environment. Sites assigned HRS scores of 28.5 or greater qualify for placement on the National Priorities List (NPL), and are eligible to receive federal funding for cleanup efforts.

Before the EPA deletes a site from the NPL, it conducts reviews to ensure the cleanup was sufficient. As a result, some sites remain on the active site list long after cleanup activities are complete.

For more information about the Superfund sites located in the Hackensack, NJ area, be sure to review the map and background information provided below:

Map Legend:


A. Scientific Chemical Processing (HRS Score: 56)

The Scientific Chemical Processing site, where solvent refining operations and chemical materials processing occurred, is located in Carlstadt, NJ.

Contaminants found at the Scientific Chemical Processing site include:

  • Arsenic
  • Benzene
  • Chloroform
  • Polychlorinated Biphenyls (PCBs)
  • P,P'-DDT

B. Universal Oil Products (Chemical Division) (HRS Score: 55)

The Universal Oil Products (Chemical Division) site, where various chemicals were produced from 1930 to 1979, is located in East Rutherford, NJ.

Contaminants found at the Universal Oil Products (Chemical Division) site include:

  • Benzene
  • Lead
  • Polychlorinated Biphenyls (PCBs)
  • Polycyclic Aromatic Hydrocarbons (PAHs)
  • Voc

C. Maywood Chemical Co. (HRS Score: 51)

The Maywood Chemical Co. site, where radioactive thorium ore was processed, is located in Maywood/Rochelle Park, NJ.

Contaminants found at the Maywood Chemical Co. site include:

  • Arsenic
  • Barium
  • Benzene
  • Chloroform
  • Chromium

D. Ventron/Velsicol (HRS Score: 51)

The Ventron/Velsicol site, where a mercury processing plant operated from 1929 until 1974, is located in Wood Ridge Borough, NJ.

Contaminants found at the Ventron/Velsicol site include:

  • Arsenic
  • Benzene
  • Mercury
  • Naphthalene

E. Quanta Resources (HRS Score: 50)

The Quanta Resources site, an oil processing facility from 1974 to 1981, is located in Edgewater, NJ.

Contaminants found at the Quanta Resources site include:

  • Antimony
  • Arsenic
  • Benzene
  • Iron
  • Mercury

F. Fair Lawn Well Field (HRS Score: 42)

The Fair Lawn Well Field site, home to four contaminated water wells, is located in Fair Lawn, NJ.


G. Curcio Scrap Metal, Inc. (HRS Score: 34)

The Curcio Scrap Metal, Inc. site, a scrap metal yard, is located in Saddle Brook Twp, NJ.

Contaminants found at the Curcio Scrap Metal, Inc. site include:

  • Antimony
  • Arsenic
  • Barium
  • Benzene
  • Beryllium

H. Garfield Ground Water Contamination (HRS Score: No Data)

The Garfield Ground Water Contamination site, which consists of the E.C. Electroplating (ECE) property and a chromium groundwater plume, is located in Garfield, NJ.

The EPA found dangerous levels of Chromium, and Chromium(VI) at the Garfield Ground Water Contamination site.

Air Quality in the Hackensack, NJ Area

The two most widespread forms of air pollution are ozone (smog) and particle pollution (soot). Exposure to these harmful pollutants, for even just a short period, can have adverse effects on your health.

Thanks to data collected by air monitoring equipment located across the country, the American Lung Association (ALA) is able to assess and track our air quality using three metrics:

  • Ozone
  • Short-term Particle Pollution
  • Year-round Particle Pollution

In their 2019 annual report, the ALA rated the air quality in Bergen County, NJ as follows:

Ozone Pollution

Grading Scale: A-F

Particle Pollution

Grading Scale: A-F

Particle Pollution

Grading Scale: Pass/Fail

Radon Levels in Hackensack, NJ Area

Air quality inside your home can be impacted by a number of factors, including the presence of hazardous substances in building materials (asbestos, lead, formaldehyde, etc.) and local radon levels.

Radon is a naturally occurring gas you cannot see or smell. It can build up inside your home and negatively impact your indoor air quality as well as your health.

To provide a guideline, the EPA assigned one of three zones to each U.S. county and county equivalent:

  • Zone 1 (higher radon levels)
  • Zone 2 (moderate levels)
  • Zone 3 (lower levels)

Indoor radon readings in Bergen County, NJ are expected to average from 2 to 4 picocuries per liter (pCi/L), so the county has been assigned EPA Radon Zone 2.

EPA Radon Zone

According to the EPA, you should consider acting to reduce your home's radon level if it measures between 2 and 4 pCi/L, so if you're contemplating buying a home in Hackensack, NJ, you should have a radon test performed.

Water Quality in Hackensack, NJ Area

In accordance with the Safe Drinking Water Act (SDWA), the EPA sets regulatory limits for drinking water contaminants known to cause adverse health effects.

The following Bergen County, NJ water provider(s) violated the maximum allowable level for one or more regulated contaminants:

Filter ValueWater SystemContaminantHealth Effects
34003Elmwood Park Water DeptTTHMLiver, kidney, or central nervous system problems; increased risk of cancer 
34003Garfield Water DepartmentTetrachloroethyleneLiver problems; increased risk of cancer 
34003Garfield Water DepartmentTrichloroethyleneLiver problems; increased risk of cancer 
34003Garfield Water DepartmentTTHMLiver, kidney, or central nervous system problems; increased risk of cancer 
34003Oakland Water DeptTetrachloroethyleneLiver problems; increased risk of cancer 
34003Ramsey Water DeptArsenicSkin damage or problems with circulatory systems, and may have increased risk of getting cancer
34003Ramsey Water DeptTetrachloroethyleneLiver problems; increased risk of cancer 
34003Ridgewood WaterArsenicSkin damage or problems with circulatory systems, and may have increased risk of getting cancer

In addition to setting enforceable standards for harmful contaminants, the EPA also established guidelines to assist public water providers in managing the taste, odor and color of their drinking water.

To find out more about what’s in your drinking water, contact your utility company and request a copy of the latest Consumer Confidence Report.

Sources and Methods

Hazardous Sites: Identified using a report from the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), hazardous sites detailed on trendingtowns.com represent sites contained on the National Priorities List (NPL) as of November 25, 2019.  The NPL is the list of national priorities among the known releases or threatened releases of hazardous substances, pollutants, or contaminants throughout the United States and its territories.  All site-related data was sourced from the EPA.

Air Quality: Grades for ozone, short-term particle pollution, and year-round particle pollution were obtained from State of the Air 2019, a report compiled by the American Lung Association.

Radon Zones: Radon zone designations were obtained using a public use dataset provided by the EPA (September 11, 2019).

Water Quality: Drinking water violation data was sourced from the Safe Drinking Water Information System (SDWIS), a public use database provided by the EPA.  The dataset included violations submitted to the database as of the third quarter of 2019.


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