Division of Spill Prevention and Response


Fort Greely, U.S. Army Space and Missile Defense Command

Database Name: Fort Greely

Status: Active

Location: Delta Junction

Latitude: See database entries

Longitude: See database entries

This site has a Restoration Advisory Board, which involves the community.

DEC Contaminated Sites contact: Melody Debenham, Project Manager for Fort Greely, Contaminated Sites Program, Spill Prevention and Response Division, Alaska Department of Environmental Conservation, 610 University Ave., Fairbanks, AK  99709-3643, (907) 451-5175, (907) 451-5105 Fax

U.S. Army contact: Glen Shonkwiler, SMDC Remedial Project Manager, U.S. Army Space and Missile Defense Command / Army Forces Strategic Command, (SMDC / ARSTRAT), SMDC-ENV-C, P.O. Box 1500, Huntsville, AL  35807-3801, (256) 955-2190, (DSN 645-2190), (256) 955-2190 Fax

Contacts updated: June 30, 2014

Summary updated: Oct. 28, 2005

Click on photos or maps for larger versions.

Contractors use direct push techniques to collect soil samples at Fort Greely.

Contractors use direct push techniques to collect soil samples at Fort Greely.


Fort Greely Alaska is located in the interior of Alaska, approximately 100 miles southeast of Fairbanks, Alaska, and five miles south of the City of Delta Junction on the Richardson Highway.

Ft. Greely was established as an Army Air Corps Base in 1942, during World War II.  It was put on inactive status in 1945, at the end of the war. The War Department used the site for a cold weather maneuver in the winter of 1947-48, and named the Army Arctic Training Center in 1952. That same year, the U.S. Army Chemical Corps-Arctic Team was established.  After a major construction program, the post was designated Ft. Greely in 1955.

The Fort's former area totaled approximately 600,000 acres.  The current area is approximately 7,000 acres.  The U.S. Army Space and Missile Defense Command (USASMDC) operates Fort Greely in support of the Ground Based Midcourse Defense Joint Program Office.  The Missile Defense Agency funds the USASMDC to maintain the facilities and infrastructure for the development and fielding of a Ballistic Missile Defense System.  The Department of the Army directed a portion of Fort Greely to be transitioned from the U.S. Army Alaska Command to the Missile Defense Command on 1 October 2002.

Under recent Army initiatives, the Installation Management Agency is responsible for base operations at Army Installations. However, the USASMDC retains responsibility for managing contaminated sites at Fort Greely.  The portions of Fort Greely not transferred to USASMDC are now called Donnelly Training Range and are still under the control of U.S. Army Alaska.

Fort Greely has undergone a number of environmental studies and restoration activities dating back to 1978.  In 1989, the first stage of the Installation Restoration Program initiated a number of investigations.  The first significant study was a Preliminary Assessment conducted in 1992.  Most of 132 sites were studied and numerous remediation projects were completed between 1992 and 1995.  In 1995, Fort Greely was selected for realignment under the Base Realignment and Closure (BRAC) Program.  The Army subsequently declared 1,700 acres surplus, including most of the cantonment area.  Fort Greely developed a cleanup plan to remediate the sites so that the surplus property would not pose any environmental liabilities to future occupants.


Remediation under BRAC continued through 2002, the scheduled implementation date for Fort Greely realignment, with the associated excessing of surplus property.  Just prior to this date, the Department of the Army decided to retain previously identified surplus property at Fort Greely and directed the current footprint be transitioned to USASMDC.  USASMDC re-started the Installation Restoration Program (IRP) following the transfer from US Army Alaska.  USASMDC gathered the environmental studies and reports from the various agencies and companies who participated in remediation efforts.  In June of 2003, USASMDC organized a meeting with past and current environmental personnel involved with Fort Greely to list all sites on Fort Greely where there was suspected or confirmed contamination.  The list of 132 sites originated from examination of all BRAC parcels, the US Environmental Protection Agency’s (USEPA) Solid Waste Management Units list, the ADEC Contaminated Sites database, and the Army Environmental Database.

Public Health and Environmental Concerns

There are potential pathways for contaminant impact on humans or the environment include contaminated groundwater migrating to drinking water wells, vapors from the subsurface contamination migrating into buildings, and direct contact with subsurface soils. Drinking water wells are monitored for contamination on a regular basis.


Current Status

An environmental fact sheet was produced for each unique site as a result of the June 2003 meeting and follow-on research.  The fact sheets are available on the Missile Defense Command's Fort Greely Website (Decision Document for Public Comment).  The USEPA and ADEC have reviewed and commented on all fact sheets and the sheets have been updated to reflect current knowledge.  A status review meeting between USASMDC, ADEC, and USEPA on April 15, 2004 in Fairbanks, Alaska reviewed each site and categorized the sites as presented in this document.  In July 2005, of the 132 sites reviewed, 30 sites were closed and 43 sites were considered non-qualifying for the Contaminated Sites Program (non-sites) because contamination was wrongly suspected or is already regulated under another ADEC program.  A copy of the recent decision document is available online at the Fort Greely Website (Environmental Sites Decision Document - June 2005 PDF).  Approximately 59 sites remain open in the Fort Greely Installation Restoration Program or the Compliance Program.

More Information

Contaminated Sites Database Reports - There are a number of individual "contaminated sites" on the air station, and reports on the status of each is available on DEC's database. We have a glossary available to help you with any acronyms used in the reports.






Contaminated Sites
Leaking Underground Tanks






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