Thursday, April 19, 2018


The main Agenda Item for discussion this evening will be the 2017 Canagagigue Creek Sediments & Soils Investigation. It is not clear from the Agenda as to whether Lanxess/GHD or the Ontario Ministry of Environment (MOE) will attend either to present or to answer questions from TAG members. Of course even if they are there to answer questions, they will not respond to questions from the general public much less from those of us who have spent close to three decades volunteering on behalf of Woolwich Township residents. Nor will they answer questions from the public such as myself who has so obviously studied this report in detail as evidenced by the last two weeks plus of posts here in the Elmira Advocate. This evisceration of public consultation will come back to haunt this Council, Lanxess and the M.O.E.. That is a promise.

Having reviewed yesterday's posting I'm going to partially respond to my own question about the significance of the exceedances by chemical and by location in yesterday's posting. Firstly both Dioxins/Furans and DDE were tied for twice having the largest percentage of criteria exceedances at each location. Secondly generally but not always Sediment samples had fewer exceedances as a percentage of total samples tested than Soil samples. Thirdly Dioxins/Furans exceedances as a percentage of samples tested in Sediment samples were very high at four of the five locations. Overall Sediment sample exceedances appeared muted versus Soil sample exceedances likely due to the Detection Limit for DDT, DDE & DDD being higher than the criteria for those chemicals in Sediments only.

I have since yesterday also looked at the highest concentrations at the five locations for creek sediments and creekbank soils as well as the one Figure (6.11) for Flood Plain Soils. The very highest total DDT concentration is 399,300 parts per billion (ppb) found in a Soil sample at New Jerusalem Rd. The second highest was 272,000 ppb found on the Lanxess property also found in a Soil sample.The third highest DDT concentration (38,520 ppb) was found in a Downstream Station 20 Soil sample. There is a definite pattern there. These are stunning concentrations which incredibly exceed any found in the last six years in and around the creek.

Dioxins/Furans have a different pattern. The top two concentrations were found in creek sediments namely 1,090 parts per trillion (ppt) at Station 21 and 285 ppt found on the Lanxess property. The third highest (242 ppt) was found in creekbank soils at the New Jerusalem site. These values are also higher than any found in and around the creek over the last six years of sampling. It certainly appears as the more sampling is done the higher the detections become. This may explain the huge miles long gaps in sampling Sediments and Creekbank Soils downstream from the Uniroyal/Lanxess property. You don't find that which you refuse to test for.

We will see this evening whether the TAG members are up to the challenge. The challenge is in reading and understanding this huge report. It is poorly written and organized. The data is very worthwhile albeit almost overwhelming. I expect maybe two TAG members only will carry the ball but hope to be pleasantly surprised otherwise.

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