California Cleanups: Treasure Island
Created for the 1939 Golden Gate International Exposition and called Magic Island, the Navy took over Treasure Island in World War II. After the war, the Navy used the base to salvage highly irradiated ships, and for radiation instrument repair, training, and experiments, among other uses. In addition, the Navy left a trove of radioactive material buried in waste pits scattered about the island.
The focus of PEER’s attention has been Site 12, a 90-acre parcel used as an ammunition bunker, storage yard, and solid waste disposal area, where materials with radioactive Radium-226 were buried. It is also where a community of mainly low-income residents live in buildings more than 50 years old.