Thursday, September 8, 2016


Not even close to a surprise. Prior to the start of the meeting I went up to Dr. Jackson and asked him if he was planning on staying on for another year. He advised that he would make a formal announcement at the end of the meeting regarding that. Also recently here in the Advocate (Fri. Sept. 2 ) I advised that Dr. Jackson's likely departure would look very bad on Mark B. & Sandy. In fact they were both present last evening and I expect it was to "observe" Dr. Jackson and whether or not he threw any stones their way. He firstly suggested he wanted to retire then he added that the issues were "intractable". Finally he commented that the "intractable" issues were not technical, they were public policy issues. O.K. now that is hitting the mark! Public policy issues as in politics front and centre.

Dr. Jackson referenced the Great Lakes Water Quality Agreement (GLWQA) which was signed on to by Ontario as well as Canada and the U.S.. He also stated that Terri Buhlman of the Ontario Ministry of the Environment has stated that Article 2 regarding eliminating or reducing threats to the Great Lakes does not apply to the Canagagigue Creek which via the Grand River empties into Lake Erie. Dr. Jackson made several other comments again last evening castigating the Ontario M.O.E. for their stalling, delays and overall refusal to follow either their own or Canadian Sediment Guidelines in the creek. Finally he also commented upon the federal government passing the buck back to the Ontario M.O.E. when they should be stepping in. Through all of this he took no direct shots at Sandy and Mark. Chemtura, CRA, M.O.E. absolutely. He advised that TAG had a decision to make regarding Media Strategy which I will follow up on later.

There was a Supplemental On-Site Investigation of the East Side received by TAG on August 10/16. I spoke up and asked whether it would be made available to the public or not. It turns out there was a snafu and only a couple of TAG members received the hard copy and none an electronic version which could be put on the Township website. Lisa Schaefer indicated that she would look into it and post it on-line as soon as possible. The results indicated more of the same contamination found over a year ago. Conestoga Rovers (Alan Deal) claim that perhaps contaminated fill from a cleanup in the 80s is to blame. Nice try there Mr. Deal.

To her modest credit Susan Bryant is opposed to another useless and biased HHRA (Human Health Risk Assessment) being done.
Afterall the only reason Chemtura and the M.O.E. want to do it is because they can control the result. They will interview local creek residents who will say they are aware and they avoid the creek as much as possible. End of story right there allegedly for health risks. TAG (Technical Advisory Group) have already passed a Motion opposing an HHRA study.

Dr. Jackson kind of put it to TAG in requiring a decision regarding a media strategy. Pat Mclean unsurprisingly spoke the strongest against TAG even having such a strategy. She wants RAC (Remediation Advicory Committee) to handle it which essentially means zero or less public transparency regarding contamination cleanup failures.

Sebastian pressed for a Motion of Censure against Chemtura due to their adamant decades long claims that yes they would clean up the Elmira Aquifers by 2028. Now in the last couple of months they are admitting that that is unlikely to happen. David Hofbauer assisted Sebastian with a friendly Amendment but only the two of them voted in favour. Again it was Pat Mclean coming to Chemtura's defence as expected. As she probably is still receiving expense paid trips around North America due to Chemtura's positive reference getting her put on the National Advisory Panel of the Chemical Industry Association of Canada; this is no surprise to me.

Dr. Jackson's resignation takes effect on December 31, 2016. This is a major loss to the public although Chemtura, the M.O.E. and certain local politicians are thrilled. Those politicians will be even more thrilled if Dr. Jackson confines his criticism to the big players and avoids naming the local, little fish.

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