Tuesday, February 15, 2011


This is the title of an Environment Canada factsheet dated August 2001. If one were to google textile mill effluents, one would find a library of reports and studies. Another report I've been studying is titled Identification and Reduction of Toxic Pollutants in Textile Mill Effluents by Brent Smith of North Carolina State University, Raleigh North Carolina. The other interesting tidbit is that the Canadian government has a Priority Substances List which indicates which chemicals or groups of chemicals are considered toxic. TME's, short for Textile mill Effluents are on that list and are designated as toxic.

Clearly the effluents from textile mills have historically been both obvious visually as well as in regards to their effects on aquatic life. Also any instances of on site dumping or disposal without major treatment would also have serious negative effects on groundwater and drinking water. I've gone through two old Varnicolor Chemical hydrogeological reports dated October 1990 and 90 06 08 (June 8, 1990 ?). Literally for years I've been aware of a myriad of chemicals in Varnicolor's groundwater which did not seem to fit in with fuels (gasoline, diesel, keresene etc.), nor with solvents both chloinated and non chlorinated. Finally there are also some chemicals in Varnicolor's groundwater which are Uniroyal signature chemicals.

What I have found is a large list of textile mill effluents in Varnicolor's groundwater. These include a number of cyclohexanes, thiobis methane, linear alcohol ethoxylate, alkylbenzenes, methyl benzoate, trimethylcyclohexanone and more. There are at least two possible interpretations. It is possible that contaminated shallow groundwater from Borg Textiles found it's way across Howard Ave. to Varnicolor. Also similar to my belief that Uniroyal legally used Varnicolor's hazardous waste services is the possibility that Borg was a former client of Varnicolor Chemical's. Once again proper shallow and deep groundwater testing could determine which or possibly both interpretations are most accurate. Perhaps even more significant is why the M.O.E. have absolutely NEVER suggested or looked at Borg Textiles as a possible source of drinking water contamination in Elmira. Based on the long known published scientific knowledge of the inherent dangers of TME's, this makes no sense.

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