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Last Edited: 9/5/2008

Aerojet-General Corporation Superfund Site, Rancho Cordova - Public Health Activities

The Aerojet-General Corporation (Aerojet) is located in Rancho Cordova, Sacramento County. Aerojet began operations in 1951. Since that time, Aerojet has manufactured liquid and solid propellants for military and commercial rocket systems and has fabricated, assembled, tested and rehabilitated rocket engines. In addition, between 1974 and 1979, Cordova Chemical Company, a wholly-owned subsidary of Aerojet, manufactured paint components, herbicides, and pharmaceutical products.

Over the years, Aerojet and Cordova Chemical disposed of hazardous waste by burial, open burning, discharge into unlined ponds, and injection into deep underground wells. Some of these discharges contaminated the groundwater beneath the site with several chemicals of health concern, including volatile organic compounds, perchlorate, and n-nitrosodimethylamine. Over time, the contaminated water reached the location of drinking water wells for private homes as well as the cities of Rancho Cordova, Carmichael, Fair Oaks, and Folsom, and some unincorporated areas of Sacramento County.

The site was placed on the National Priorities List (NPL) on September 8,1983. The Regional Water Quality Control Board, the California Department of Toxic Substances Control and the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, are the lead regulatory agencies overseeing groundwater investigation and cleanup at Aerojet.

The Site Assessment Section of the Environmental Health Investigations Branch has conducted public health assessment activities on the Aerojet site since 1988. These activities evaluated community exposure to chemicals from the Aerojet facility and potential health effects resulting from these exposures. We are also conducting a health study of exposure to perchlorate and its potential effect on thyroid function in newborn infants.

Health Study

Perchlorate in Drinking Water and Thyroid Function in Newborns


Health Consultation: Perchlorate contamination in the Arden Cordova Water Service Area, 1988

Health Consultation: Perchlorate contamination in the Citizens Utilities Surburban and Security Part Water Services Area, 1988

Health Consultation: Perchlorate contamination in the Mather Air Force Base Water Service Area, 1988

Health Consultation: Preliminary Health Reviews in Rancho Cordova, 1988

Fact Sheets

Perchlorate in Drinking Water, 1997

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