Wednesday, February 1, 2023

AMAZING HOW TAG & RAC CAN TURN OFF & ON AT WILL THE OUTRAGE & DISGUST TOWARDS THE ONT. MIN. OF ENVIRONMENT

 Even I am shocked. How can this be? I've seen, heard and smelled the decades of lies, distortions, bullsh.t and professional deceit of the M.O.E., MOECC, MOECP by whatever name they want to be known by. I've been rereading Minutes of TAG & RAC meetings between September 2015 and December 2016 when Dr. Richard Jackson was Chair of TAG. I guess what really shocked me is after Dr. Jackson gave his resignation date how aggressive some TAG members became almost as if they wanted to be identified as pro environment and anti polluter and all their friends. Then even RAC got on the bandwagon albeit it was mostly the TAG members in attendance who got aggressive. This particularly included the two conflict of interest queens, Pat and Susan. 

The two dates in which some members got aggressive at both TAG and RAC meetings were the October 13, 2016  public TAG meeting and the December 8, 2016 RAC meeting.  My writeups here in the Advocate occurred the following day and days namely Friday October 14, 2016 and Friday December 9, 2016. And to think that I used to call Mark Bauman Mr. Flip Flop. Susan, Pat and Mark along with Dr. Jackson and Sebastian gave the Ministry of Environment what for at the December RAC meeting. At the October TAG meeting it was primarily Dr. Jackson along with David Hofbauer, Sebastian, Susan Bryant and others. I particularly enjoyed the references to "Fortress" M.O.E..

After Dr. Jackson's departure the liars and hypocrites went back to unreserved support for Chemtura and the M.O.E. Of course none of their words were publicly reported in the Woolwich Observer, K-W Record or the closed Elmira Independent. Only a few keeners looking up TAG and RAC Minutes on the Woolwich Township website would have seen it.  

Tuesday, January 31, 2023

MORE RESEARCH INTO DR. JACKSON'S PRONOUNCEMENTS

 I am almost overwhelmed. Yesterday I posted some results from rereading my Elmira Advocate posts from September 2015 to July 2016. Today I'm adding only SOME of the rest that Dr. Jackson spelled out from August 2016 until his last RAC meeting in December 2016.

Some of these statements of Dr. Jackson are direct quotes that I wrote down. Amazingly there are even a few from Lisa Schaefer as she dutifully recorded them in the TAG Minutes. They are shocking and I am printing them out for future dissemination.

" TAG discussed the potential that the Township has exhausted all technical arguments and run into a wall of public policy and bureaucratic lethargy and as such, the only path forward is a media strategy or going to the Environmental Commissioner, which does not report to the MOECC but to Queen's Park."

"TAG also discussed whether a technical advisory committee was beneficial anymore to the Township as a technical case to the MOECC does not seem to move the need for action forward. Perhaps a group who focuses on public policy is what is needed going forward."

"TAG is concerned that the MOECC is stating that suspended sediment sampling does not help manage the problem. Federal law mandates that the Provinces monitor pesticide contamination and it is not at MOECC's discretion to decide whether or not to monitor suspended sediment.".

This last quote comes from my October 15, 2016 Elmira Advocate Blog posting and is based upon my handwritten notes taken at the public TAG meeting two days earlier:

"Lastly Dick Jackson suggested that he would like Hatfield consultants to do an independent Risk Assessment of the creek as they are recognized international experts on Dioxin contamination. Dick also suggested a trip to the Environmental Commissioner regarding technical evidence that the M.O.E. are violating Ontario law." 

WOW! This is but a small sample of what else Dr. Jackson and indeed occasionally other TAG members had to say. Where oh where was our local newspaper when we needed them so desperately to report this?

 

Monday, January 30, 2023

DID SANDY & MARK EVER SCREW UP WITH DR. RICHARD JACKSON'S APPOINTMENT TO TAG (Sept. 2015)

 I mean mostly the TAG members consisted of Sandy's curling buddies from the Elmira Curling Club plus citizen members on TAG were designed to be second fiddle to RAC which is the government bureaucrats and politicians who know little or nothing. Talk about the perfect pretend "public consultation". A funny thing happened however. Technically and environmentally Dr. Jackson was miles ahead of everybody else on Council, RAC, TAG, Chemtura, CRA and the Ont. Min. of Environment (M.O.E.). He was what could only terrorize Chemtura and the M.O.E. namely an honest, highly credentialed expert and highly experienced environmental professional. And he couldn't be bought or intimidated by those @#$%^&*(.

For sixteen months Dr. Jackson as Chair of TAG made Chemtura, Conestoga Rovers (CRA) and the Ont. M.O.E. cringe and cower. He called them out bluntly and incessantly. Why did he do that? Probably because he knew that they had hijacked the cleanup of Elmira's soils, ground and surface water and talked world class cleanup while delivering third class or worse results. Frankly he made it clear that he was appalled by their version of an environmental cleanup.

Following is a short list of his serious criticisms of their cleanup:

Suspended Sediments in the Canagagigue Creek. For decades they were throwing out the baby with the bath water. In other words they tested and sampled the water for everything AFTER filtering out the really harmful suspended sediments transporting Uniroyal Chemical's toxins downstream to local neighbours and the rest of Waterloo Region.

Dioxins in and around the Creek. Dr. Jackson wanted a truly independent company to test for dioxin contamination in soils and sediments downstream from Uniroyal/Chemtura. He even suggested that he had zero confidence in the M.O.E. doing it but would have confidence if Hatfield Consultants with their extensive expertise did the work.

In Situ Chemical Oxidation (ISCO) pilot program attempts. He referred to them as amateurish among other things. According to Dr. Jackson the attempt at off-site contaminant source removal was set up to fail. Readers keep in mind that yours truly made a Delegation/Presentation to CPAC back about 2009 extolling not only the virtues of ISCO but also the fact that it was used to remove Trichloroethylene (TCE) from groundwater in Cambridge from the Northstar Aerospace Co. and another. 

Chemtura/CRA failure to recognize a major basal gravel unit at the bottom of the Municpal Aquifer that was a strong preferential pathway for contaminated groundwater flow . As I recall targeting this pathway for pump & treat wells or other remediation would/could have cut many years off of cleanup times.

Back Diffusion from soils back into groundwater was not properly understood nor planned for. Personally I'm thinking that this is where the DNAPL coverups and intentional DNAPL investigation failures contributed to the failure to achieve drinking water standards by 2028. Uniroyal contaminants migrate through both aquifers and into aquitards and other less permeable underground stratigraphy. After decades of pumping aquifers to reduce their contaminant concentrations, the contaminants back diffuse from aquitards etc. into the aquifers. This back diffusion based upon the quantity of contamination bound to the soils results in slow increases in groundwater contamination again (i.e. "Rebound"). 

There is more. I am currently reading through my Elmira Advocate postings of TAG meetings between September 2015 and December 2016. The majority of these postings occurred the next day after the public TAG meetings which I attended and took notes at.

   

Saturday, January 28, 2023

SO AS BAD AS THEY ARE SHOULD TAG CONTINUE?

 Or worded otherwise is there any public value in their continued goody two shoes, oh so deferential, oh so polite existence? Hmm despite Tiffany's attempts (in harmony with Ramin Ansari's) to verbally minimize the serious consequences of long term, continued on-site pumping failures, the answer is grudgingly yes. Lies are being told but even the most deferential and dense TAG members are at last beginning to ask well why is there a Target Rate in the first place if it's numbers are being ignored? Eventually they will clue in to the fact that the Target Rates as clearly STATED IN WRITING are the actual pumping recommendations either to maintain hydraulic containment on the Lanxess site (i.e. stop leakage of contaminated groundwater off-site) or they are the required pumping rates to actually clean up the contaminated Elmira Aquifers. Oh and these Target Rates are determined by Lanxess Canada's own client driven consultants (GHD).

Other unanswered and unclarified comments also go onto the formal record (maybe). Tiffany's comments about the excess chlorobenzene discovered or at least pronounced by Dr. Neil Thompson is an example. Chlorobenzene is a DNAPL chemical and maybe, just maybe "they" continue to lie to citizens on this point as well. Yes chlorobenzene concentrations have dropped in many locations. If however there is still sub-surface either residual or free phase chlorobenzene present then good luck with that. Slow dissolving chlorobenzene (& other DNAPLS) will be with us for a very long time as in literally decades or longer. While it dissolves into groundwater at above drinking water standards it takes a very long time to do so without additional cleanup technologies being used. Additional technologies that Uniroyal/Crompton/Chemtura and Lanxess have long resisted and their fellow travellors including politicians have given them support to resist and ignore.

Keeping TAG around longer is better than shutting everything down and pretending the crisis is over. It is not and the Creek, the Elmira Aquifers and the Lanxess site remain highly polluted. Of course over thirty-three years have been wasted with the cheapest, least effective cleanup possible always ruling.


Friday, January 27, 2023

LAST NIGHT'S TAG MEETING - THEY ARE TRYING - SORT OF

 Well the Township's audio sucked for at least the first ten minutes. Hence there I was watching people's lips moving while I could hear nothing except for every couple of minutes a screech in my ears. I missed the first three Agenda items namely Land Acknowledgement, Disclosures of Pecuniary Interest and Approval of Previous Minutes. Only the last would have been remotely interesting particularly as the second is so much bullsh.t. 

Item 5.1 "MECP Comments on AMR (Annual Monitoring Report)" might have been interesting . Hard to say. I did hear Tiffany Svensson (2nd (& worst) TAG Chair) mention the "excess" chlorobenzene found in the Elmira Municipal Aquifers. Of course all the Johnny Come Latelys on TAG haven't the foggiest notion where it came from as allegedly neither does Tiffany. I can tell you when CRA found it and where, en masse, as DNAPL 100 feet below the ground surface smack dab in the middle of the off-site Elmira drinking water aquifers. Of course this is why I and a few others are not on TAG. Our information is not wanted or appreciated being given to the public. 

Sebastian Seibel-Achenbach asked when and who will be involved in future discussions regarding the failed 2028 groundwater cleanup deadline. Sandy Shantz, bless her pointed little head, advised that politicians don't understand technical issues. Ooh what a surprise. They do understand however whom they want in charge and whom they don't and truth and facts come a far distant tenth.

Sandy also suggested that excess water from the treatment systems is being discharged into the Canagagigue Creek. Well of course it is but contrary to Sandy's ignorance it is not either clean water or water meeting the Ontario Drinking Water Standards as weak as they are. It is contaminated groundwater that has at least been partially treated to lower the concentrations of multiple toxic compounds. 

Item 5.2 was actually not a bad discussion of the ongoing failures namely months and greater than a year of on-site Municipal Aquifer pumping wells PW4 & PW5. Other wells were also mentioned and there was the usual bullsh.t debate, courtesy of Tiffany, about whether those long term failures to achieve the Target Pumping Rate indicate a loss of hydraulic containment and thus contaminated groundwater flowing off-site. Tiffany prefers that it doesn't yet nobody on TAG seem bright enough to simply read Lanxess's consultant GHD's words written at the bottom of each monthly Table presented. Those words indicate that GHD are recommending that Lanxess pump each well at OR GREATER than the stated Target Pumping Rate . Holy fu.k but they are dumb!

We also were advised that toluene continues to be found being discharged into the Creek at greater than their discharge criteria. Of course short of a minor verbal slap on the wrist all parties appear to feel that the environment should suck it up. Councillor Nathan Cadeau attended the virtual meeting (Ha some of those fu.kers were there together) and he asked pointed questions as to why it took so many months or years to repair the frickin pumps. Sebastian was also helpful during this discussion.

Susan raised a good point about the Elmira Aquifers getting a lot of attention and money (including taxpayers') while the Canagagigue Creek continues to leak from 3/4 of its creekbanks. This leakage of course includes NDMA, benzene, toluene, chlorobenzene and lots more. Sha also pointed out the falsehoods and deception of individual Ontario Drinking Water Standards (ODWS) when there are multiple contaminants simultaneously both in the Creek, the Grand River and in our drinking water.

Item 5.3 was RAC/TAG administrative updates. Basically one more TAG member has resigned namely Dustin Martin. This follows Bill Barr, Joe Kelly, Katharina Richter, Pat McLean and probably more. The only two I miss are Joe Kelly and Katharina Richter. TAG briefly discussed new members but in their vast ignorance continue to ignore those with the most local experience and knowledge right in front of them. Doubtless they've been told and as good little boys and girls they comply. 

The next meeting is March 23, 2023 presumably at 6:30 pm. and presumably still unnecessarily virtual.. 

    




Thursday, January 26, 2023

HMM SO IS THERE ANYTHING GOOD ABOUT TAG & RAC?

 I suppose as long as they continue to meet sort of publicly (i.e. remotely/virtually) then in theory at least there can be some appropriate opposition to their unacceptable plans and delays. Also they do take Minutes and then publish them which also is helpful. Finally occasionally we hear from Lanxess and the Ministry of Environment and while most of it is inaccurate, wishful thinking, junk science at least we get it in writing. Perhaps further generations will publish a book of humour with quotes from these two parties. Let's see how about "Dilution is the Solution for Pollution"? Better yet how about "Dilution and Verbal Pollution Equals The Solution!"  Here's my favourite "Dilution of Pollution is Always My Solution".

Well I can't help it but obviously I must think that there is light at the end of this very long tunnel (into the 34th year now). Really as all politicians know it only takes a crisis, real or manufactured, to give momentum for change. Maybe the soon to be built Hawkridge Homes on Union St. will be the unfortunate answer. Sulco (CCC) seriously and honestly shone a light on the potential for either serious issues or even worse with this new subdivision. Chemtura/Lanxess bailed on their responsibilities in my opinion. Sometimes non-actions have more serious consequences than actions.  

 

Wednesday, January 25, 2023

MORE REGARDING TOMORROW'S TAG MEETING

 TAG  - Technical Advisory Group  - TAG do not even generally directly engage with Lanxess or the Ministry of Environment. They were set up to be middlemen between Lanxess/GHD/MECP via giving advice to RAC which is the Remediation Advisory Committee. Just to be clear whatever weaknesses and failures TAG have, RAC are much worse. They are a bunch of bureaucrats and politicians representing the GRCA, Region of Waterloo, Woolwich Township etc. Their organizations have long ago signed off on the sweetheart deal with Uniroyal Chemical and their corporate successors. They got a water pipeline up from Waterloo and they've had an ongoing token attempt at "cleanup" for  the last thirty-three years. No where near good enough.

Item 5.2 is Monthly Progress Reports for October, November and December 2022. TAG have expressed appropriate concerns regarding both reduced on-site (MU) Municipal Aquifer pumping (PW4 & 5) as well as off-site pumping in the past. Current off-site total pumping is in the vicinity of 70 litres per second which historically is very good. Unfortunately when Chemtura etc. have made promises to CPAC (Chemtura Public Advisory Committee) of 100 - 150 litres per second (i.e. 2x & 3x 2012 pumping rates) that 70 l/s doesn't look so hot. The problem however is that the on-site MU pumping isn't even achieving it's Target Pumping Rate (4.7 l/sec) that was set for the old off-site pumping rate of approximately 53 l/sec. Meanwhile they are pumping more than ever off-site which draws contaminated on-site water off-site . 

The other pumping issue is the greatly reduced pumping of the UACTS or Upper Aquifer Containment & Treatment System. That doesn't even seem to be getting a look from TAG or anybody else. This is alleged "public consultation" at its' worst. Nobody has much history and one that does sold out long ago. Our authorities love this model and will keep on plugging in new members at their will versus calling upon experienced and knowlegable citizens such as myself and former CPAC members.

Regarding Agenda Item 5.3 "RAC/TAG Administrative Updates" the least that will be is no change in membership as the guilty parties are happy with it or possibly the beginning of the wrap-up and wind-down of even token, fake public consultation.