Saturday, January 31, 2015


The somewhat crude expression above is currently relevant to the relationship between Chemtura and CPAC. While fortunately for both parties it hasn't exactly occurred I believe that at a minimum CPAC have given Chemtura a RIN or rap in the .... . This is the second such occurrence during this CPAC's tenure. Back in 2012 CPAC and Council endorsed and passed a Resolution demanding source removal on site as the 2028 Elmira groundwater deadline wasn't going to happen. Chemtura and their acolytes demurred suggesting all was well and that CPAC didn't know what they were talking about. As Ron Campbell has often pointed out, lo and behold by November 2012 Conestoga Rovers reversed themselves and rolled out a plan to triple off-site pumping and to use source removal via In-Situ Chemical Oxidation. This was a huge turnaround all the while pretending that CPAC had no influence on them. Bullshit!

It's happened again. CPAC via Peter Gray's MTE Consultants Report has delivered the equivalent of a low blow to Chemtura's privates. Also Woolwich Council again endorsed a Resolution calling for an investigation. Three months later and Chemtura are still too embarassed to show their faces in public at CPAC meetings. While flatly refusing to respond to CPAC about that bombshell nevertheless yesterday they released a new Conestoga Rovers Report titled "East Side Surficial Soil and Groundwater Investigation Work Plan" . Conestoga Rovers & Associates Plan or CRAP for short may well turn out to be exactly that. Or not. CPAC & SWAT will read it carefully and make a determination.

Mayor Shantz, Thursday evening in Council Chambers, made a totally understandable comment. She suggested that CPAC has little or no power or authority over Chemtura. In principle she is right. However look carefully at the two CPAC Resolutions endorsed by the last Woolwich Council. I say to you and to Council that CPAC WITH COUNCIL'S SUPPORT has a strong influence on Chemtura and the Ontario Ministry of the Environment.

Friday, January 30, 2015


The regularily scheduled 6 pm. CPAC meeting was preceeded by Mayor Shantz and CAO Dave Brenneman having a public sit down and chat with CPAC. Mayor Shantz explained that it was preferable to her that the air get cleared and that first hand communications between herself and CPAC were superior to flurries of e-mails going back and forth. I was and am impresed with her candour and no nonsense attitude.

Basically Sandy (Mayor Shantz) encouraged us to ask her questions and there were a ton of them concerning her and Council's ongoing dealings with both Chemtura and the Ontario Ministry of the Environment. While I am no fan of private meetings discussing a group (CPAC) in their absence; the only thing worse would be keeping it a secret. Kudos to both Mayor Shantz and Councillor Mark Bauman as they explained the private meetings that they had had with Chemtura and the Ont. M.O.E. both individually and together.

One of my concerns about meetings dealing with individuals or groups behind their backs is that it is far too easy for some of the parties present to gild the lily in the absence of the party being discussed. In this case having CPAC member and Councillor Mark Bauman present is not remotely an adequate safeguard that only honest information will be shared and communicated. While Mark has indeed proven himself on matters regarding Council grants to CPAC he has also defied CPAC's express wishes regarding my membership on CPAC.

Mayor Shantz is not a pushover and that came through when she defended her position on the possibility of reopening CPAC Applications down the road. I made my position very clear that I viewed that action as being both dishonest and an abuse of process. Mayor Shantz politely held firm and stated that Council would make that decision at a later date.

Mark Bauman advised us of several significant and relevant points he had raised with the M.O.E.. CPAC Chair Dr. Dan Holt quite bluntly and firmly advised the Mayor that it was not appropriate to be holding private meetings discussing CPAC without their Chair, himself, present. Again they had to agree to disagree. Personally I have seen way too much of the results of those kinds of private meetings undermining honest citizen reps while bolstering the position of groups such as Chemtura or the M.O.E..

Last evenings pre-meeting with Mayor Shantz was very sucessful. CPAC got a lot off their chests, the mayor listened and understood whether or not she agreed with everything. Speaking for myself and I believe this opinion is shared, I am feeling much better that Woolwich Council are not selling the farm behind the scenes to Chemtura or the M.O.E.. CPAC made it very clear to the Mayor, CAO, Councillor Bauman at the table and Councillor Hahn (Scott) in the audience that Chemtura and the M.O.E. have a lot to answer for and that respect and courtesy are a two way street. I made it clear that dishonesty and deflection of answers and information by the other parties will continue not to be tolerated. I also believe that the Mayor and CAO have a much better understanding of CPAC/SWAT's mutual support, respect and cohesiveness.

Without either Chemtura or the Ministry of Environment present for the second public CPAC meeting in a row, it was much easier to keep the formal CPAC meeting short. I presented documentation which I handed out to CPAC, SWAT, Councillor Hahn and Mayor Shantz. It was a series of maps showing everything from floodplain information to vegetation on Chemtura's south-east corner. There were also two maps showing two different locations for gravel Pit 1 (GP1). This was two different locations from what Conestoga Rovers have claimed for the last twenty plus years. I also explained that CRA had dramatically increased the size of GP1 over just the last three years on their maps. Just like Peter Gray's MTE Consultant's Report, the ball is firmly in Chemtura's court. Will they respond intelligently to these legitimate questions and concerns over the real location of GP1 or will they continue to stonewall?

Thursday, January 29, 2015


Chemtura have long hidden behind their well paid consultants Conestoga Rovers. Outlandish, ridiculous claims of hydraulic containment, Elmira Aquifer cleanup, non-presence of DNAPLS, alleged inability of DDT and Dioxins to mobilize etc. the list is nearly endless. When push comes to shove however it is the Ontario Ministry of the Environment who have always been there for them. Ever since the October 7, 1991 Indemnity aka "Sweetheart Deal" the Ontario M.O.E. have covered up all of Chemtura's dirty little pollution secrets. The M.O.E. are corrupt. And they are crybabies just like Chemtura.

At last October's public CPAC meeting we gained insight into that. Steve Martindale pulled out all the stops and advised CPAC, the media and the gallery including Woolwich Councillors Larry Shantz, Pat Merlihan, Scot Hahn and Mayor Shantz about how often he reads this Blog (Elmira Advocate) and how upsetting it is to senior Ministry Staff. Oh boo hoo. They are such hypocrites that just like Chemtura they believe they have both the right to lie to the public and the right not to be called on it. Stop lying and I'll stop calling you on it. It really is that simple.

It's all about Peter Gray's MTE Report. I'm going to put that in large letters especially for the politicians who are masters at deflection. IT'S ALL ABOUT THE MTE REPORT ! 6 1/2 pages of text followed by Figures and Diagrams from previously submitted M.O.E., CRA, RMOW (CH2MHILL), Morrison-Beatty and other consultants reports submitted primarily on behalf of Chemtura Canada and the M.O.E. themselves. And allegedly neither Chemtura/CRA nor the M.O.E. can read and analyse this brief 6 1/2 page Report since last October. BULLSHIT!

Now both Chemtura and the M.O.E. are only boycotting CPAC for one reason. They are boxed into a corner by facts and they desperately need local politicians to bail them out. Afterall isn't that the essential purpose of politicians? It is to run interference for both corporate interests and other levels of government in need. Scratch my back during a crisis and we the province will scratch yours. Stay tuned and watch how local politicians do their damndest to extricate Chemtura and the M.O.E. from CPAC's facts, reports and honest actions.

These current CPAC members are Dr. Dan Holt, Dr. Sebastian Seibel-Achenbach, Vivienne Delaney, Graham Chevreau, Ron Campbell and Council appointed Mark Bauman. SWAT members are Richard Clausi, Dr. Henry Regier and myself Al Marshall. These are the real deal. ACCEPT NO SUBSTITUTES ! New members will be Chemtura mouthpieces and vetted by them. Honourable mention goes to Ken Jensen and Paul Menkveld who while technically SWAT members have been otherwise occupied.

Wednesday, January 28, 2015


Tomorrow night at CPAC I will be handing out maps and other data proving that GP1 is a bastard. Is that the right word? In other words its' lineage is highly suspect. Where did it come from? Who has moved it from place to place on various maps? Who is correct? Does its' location on a map really matter or is the real question where did the massive volumes of toxic wastewater flow over the decades, if not into Conestoga Rovers' alleged GP1? Finally the last question: Who benefits? Who has motive to move GP1? The answer to that is easy... CHEMTURA, CHEMTURA, CHEMTURA

There are at least a couple of reports that I have read that claim that overland flow from the eastern toxic waste pits flowed into GP1. Note there is very little mention or none of GP2. Interestingly even Conestoga Rovers of late are now suggesting that very little went into GP2. That also serves the interests of Chemtura by pretending that GP1 in its' current location soaked everyhting up and it didn't flow either into GP2 or off-site. All of that is self-serving hooyey.

Both the Jackman, Ralston and Smith 1985 "History of Uniroyal Waste Management at Elmira" and the 1991 Environmental Audit by Conestoga Rovers mention GP1's role as the destination of surface flowing liquid toxic wastes. Or do they? A more thorough read seems to indicate that manmade furrows permitted overland flow from the east pits (RPE 1-5) to discharge into a gravel pit, singular. While the MOE/GRCA Jackman, Ralston & Smith Report clearly places GP1 on the east side of the diagonally positioned, high gravel ridge even Conestoga Rovers 1991 Environmental Audit could be so interpreted. At the least the 1991 Audit does not have GP1 in its' current location nestled up to GP2 at the extreme south-eastern corner of the property.

So if the real issue is where did the liquid wastes including solvents, Dioxins and DDT go; then what is the motive to move GP1 on the maps? As always the motive is money and public relations. Uniroyal/Chemtura want more of both. They were stuck with the text stating that overflowing liquid wastes flowed into a gravel pit as located in Fig.1 courtesy of the 1985 MOE/GRCA Report. Worse yet a large manmade Drain (Stroh) was excavated twenty feet away probably in 1985 to drain both the Stroh and nearest Uniroyal swamp/wetland. The original MOE/GRCA location makes it all too obvious that everything that wasn't tied down flowed south-east into the Stroh Drain, past the Martin Pond and into the Canagagigue Creek well downstream of routine surface water testing in the creek. What a fabulous scam!

The Stroh Drain was kept a secret until I found it last May. I immediately alerted CPAC, unlike Councillor Mark Bauman who later sat on the concrete diversion of the Stroh Drain into the Martin pond for six weeks. It was in Chemtura's best financial and PR interests to pretend that their liquid wastes flowed uncontained for decades through swamps and wetlands directly into their location of GP1 where by the miracles of modern science it didn't further overflow into the Canagagigue directly or indirectly via contaminated groundwater. As I said earlier, hooey!

Tuesday, January 27, 2015


Is there any way back from their cowardly exit from the field of public consultation? Are there any serious fellow travellors of theirs who will champion them now? The barn burning bombshell of the MTE Report has them still unable to face the public and the Chemtura Public Advisory Committee (CPAC). Only once before in 1999 did Jeff M., Dwighte E., David Ash and Steve Quigley give up the field of battle. At the time I happily credited Gerry Heideburt and Ron Ormson of the UPAC Air sub-committee. If current fellow travellors of Chemtura and the Ministry of the Environment still view Chemtura's retreat as a CPAC failure then let me remind them that their darlings Pat McLean and Susan Bryant were also present at that time.

Chemtura have sent their regrets ahead of time for both last November's CPAC meeting and for this Thursday's. Back in November Steve Martindale of the M.O.E. made a point of pointing out to CPAC that he had read this Elmira Advocate Blog for his source of information. I applaud Steve's discerning choice of reading material. Here you receive the truth. Elsewhere not so much except from CPAC and SWAT. Amongst honest citizens that carries weight, again not so much amongst Chemtura's fellow travellors. How bluntly need I put this? Honest, intelligent people do not support Chemtura, their word or their environmental positions. Chemtura like and support certain local people. Being on that list is not to your credit.

Notably this time Chemtura did not storm out in the middle of a meeting. Just like last time their credibility is on the line. The ramifications of the east side overflows, leakages and discharges are immense. Combined with the Stroh Drain, possible east-side groundwater collection trenches and probably intentional mislocation of GP1; their environmental stewardship claims are crumbling. Three months and counting and no intelligent response to the 6 1/2 pages of text combined with a number of Figures that is the Peter Gray MTE Report.

O.K. Steve it's now 8:22 am on Tuesday January 27/15. You can go ahead and tell CPAC that you're also not coming this Thursday after reading here that your buddies (Chemtura) aren't coming so neither are you; exactly as you did last November.

Monday, January 26, 2015


Chemtura and the Ministry of the Environment do their best work under cover of darkness. Private meetings, subtle suggestions, blatant lies are all in a dirty days work for them. Similar to a pair of local cowards they prefer to let others lead the way with their untruths . Retired mayors and M.O.E. directors, retired reporters you name it; there is no one whom they aren't willing to comprimise to benefit their own interests.

Other than Councillor Mark Bauman, CPAC members get exactly nothing for their time on behalf of the public interest. This is contrary to the previous CPAC Chair who was surrepticiously receiving expense paid trips around North America courtesy of the Canadian Chemical Producers Association. Pat Mclean may have told a confidant or two but she certainly did not advise the voting CPAC members at the time such as myself. Shameful and disgraceful yet Woolwich Councils never commented, disciplined or condemned, to their own shame.

Chemtura and the M.O.E. along with silent supporters are trying to drum up support to drastically change CPAC membership and meetings. Currently they are running and hiding from public meetings where they are naturally expected to comment on the MTE Report, just for starters. They've had three months to date and they would rather change the channel than deal with this Report which fundamentally challenges their credibility, cleanup and integrity.

CPAC and SWAT members will not tolerate any attempts by ANYONE to scapegoat them for Chemtura's and the M.O.E.'s sins, failures and negligence. CPAC & SWAT will not stand idly by and be badmouthed by vested interests and guilty parties whether professionals, amateurs or politicians. This Committee of Council, who more importantly are a group of citizens, have responsibly and meritorously discharged their duties to Woolwich residents.

Saturday, January 24, 2015


This week's Woolwich Observer carrys an article on page 14 titled "Preserving what would otherwise be washed away". As the title above implies it is about soil particles en masse being flushed down the creeks and tributaries leading into the Grand River. The article focuses on the double whammy of loss of good, productive soil for farmers as well as the negative environmental effects of excess organic material ending up in the Grand River and Lake Erie where it spurs the production of oxygen consuming algae, to the detriment of living creatures in the ecosystem. Agricultural soils are far more prone to erosion particularily if fields are left ploughed over the winter without cover crops. The Grand River Conservation Authority estimates that between three and twenty tonnes of soil per acre erode into surface water bodies in the watershed each year.

As serious, damaging and wasteful as that is there is yet another issue. Right here in Elmira, Ontario we the citizens are constantly being bombarded with environmental propaganda from our favourite polluter, Chemtura Canada. One item they simply refuse to admit is that Persistent Organic Pollutants (POPs) can flow in groundwater. Similarily by focusing on the chemical nature of DDT and Dioxins (POPs) which are hydrophobic they pretend that they also can't flow in surface water. They constantly tell us that Dioxins and DDT bind to soil particles preferentially. They don't like to dissolve in ground or surface water.

Based upon this article in the Observer it makes the transport method of these POPs very obvious. Remember three to twenty tonnes of soil per acre per year erodes into our local creeks (Canagagigue) and rivers (Grand). Also recall the recent MTE Report presented publicly at the Chemtura Public Advisory Committee (CPAC) last October. Chemtura's/Uniroyal's toxins have a high probability of having flowed onto their eastern neighbour's farmfields. These fields drain via both ground and surface water into the Stroh Drain and from there into the Canagagigue Creek.

Our Ministry of the Environment in an attempt "to reassure" the public tested downstream in 2012 and 2013 only to find higher levels of POPs than in the late 90's. I'm sure the sudden release/departure of George Karlos of the M.O.E. had nothing to do with his decision to do this testing.

Friday, January 23, 2015


Today's Woolwich Observer carrys the following story (not on-line yet) "Grant will help CPAC continue its investigations". Regarding the Stroh Drain the Observer states "Following a review of previous data, financed in part by a $10,000 grant in 2014, there are concerns DDT and other contaminants will be found on that part of the property, perhaps leaching into the drain and creek, and ultimately into the Grand River system said CPAC Chairman Dan Holt."

The Observer also states "While the committee has stepped up its efforts to monitor the site- the source of contaminants in the aquifers under Elmira, among other environmental issues- its findings and concerns have gained no traction with either the company or the Ministry of the Environment. Both groups have recently pulled away from meetings.".

Further "Coun. Patrick Merlihan pointed out that the findings and resultant expert study last year that found a list of deficiencies has failed to produce action from either the chemical company or the government.".

Similarily "In that vein, Coun. Mark Bauman argued responsibility for funding the kind of studies CPAC wants to do really rests with Chemtura and the ministry, neither of which has been cooperative.".

The Observer further added "We know under their property is a horrible mess," said Bauman, noting it's important to know what might be seeping off of Chemtura's land.".

What is clear here is that Chemtura and the M.O.E. are pulling away from CPAC exactly as Uniroyal/Chemtura did in 1999 when the heat got too much for them. In 1999 the issue was air emissions inflicted upon the residents of Duke St. in Elmira. CPAC took the company to task and did not accept their excuses. Uniroyal walked out of the middle of a UPAC meeting and stayed out for 18 months before being sweetalked back by UPAC Chair Pat Mclean and the CCPA (Canadian Chemical Producers Assoc'n). The CCPA told Uniroyal they would never get *Responsible Care verification if they didn't dialogue with the community through CPAC.

Any individual or party suggesting that CPAC are currently at fault or responsible for Chemtura's and the M.O.E.'s non-cooperation and pitiful whining and complaining are either uninformed, unintelligent or biased or all three. Biased would include any politician more worried about upsetting the status quo both with the provincial government or with Chemtura's continued presence here in Elmira. Has Chemtura actually gone so far as to threaten local politicians that they will pull up stakes if the Township keep supporting CPAC? I've got news for you. Eventually they are going to do exactly that. If not today then tomorrow and appeasing them for the sake of an extra year or two is ridiculous.

Thursday, January 22, 2015


To suggest that Chemtura's credibility is getting killed at public CPAC meetings is to state the obvious. While it is always nice to have an independent third party opinion (MTE Consultants) supporting your own, nevertheless as I preached to Susan and Pat for years you need to have confidence in your opinions provided they are based upon your own personal research, reading, listening and hard work. That pair constantly wanted to hide behind an occasionally uninformed hydrogeologist whom they parachuted in every few years. They also apparently didn't have the courage of their convictions to confront Chemtura's consultants, Conestoga Rovers. Or perhaps in hindsight it wasn't so much their courage as it was the sincereity of their convictions.

I've just reviewed the newspaper articles from this past year. The Waterloo Region Record, Woolwich Observer and Elmira Independent have all reported on the current goings on. Obviously the Elmira Independent are front and centre as they regularily attend and report on CPAC meetings. Kudos to Gail Martin.

Today's Elmira Independent has reported both the $10,000 grant that Woolwich Council gave to CPAC last Thursday nite as well as having an announcement about next week's CPAC meeting (Jan. 29 6 pm.) in Council Chambers. Both the Ontario Ministry of the Environment (M.O.E.) and Chemtura are between a rock and a hard place. CPAC have made it clear that they want input and feedback on three huge issues. Chemtura and the M.O.E. have been playing hookey from public CPAC meetings with virtually last minute non-excuses.

The three issues are Peter Gray's MTE Report, the excavation of the wrong GP1 and the lines, scars and trenches showing up in satellite photos of their property. Chemtura seem to have no problem crying to the Township privately about the first and last issues. Therefore they are in trouble right now. After their private whining and receiving assurances that things at CPAC would change to their benefit how could they possibly boycott next week's meeting? That said they don't have a leg to stand on and they know it. The uncontested evidence to date (MTE Report) indicates off-site flow of both groundwater and toxic liquid wastes to the east and to the south (Stroh property). The evidence, including GP1, which has been made both public and to CPAC & SWAT is very damning regarding off-site flow to the south-east into the Stroh Drain.
The weakest evidence to date, but most incredibly charged item are the lines, scars and trenches showing up on the surface of their property. To call their response weak is an understatement. Verbal statements of either livestock fences or wildlife fences are simply ridiculous without some kind of serious evidence included. Logic, timing and common sense indicate the strong possibility that these lines or scars on the surface of their property are from a secret groundwater collection trench delivering their contaminated groundwater onto their neighbour's property (Stroh). There are other possibilities but Chemtura's non-response to date speaks volumes.

CPAC & SWAT are looking forward to next week's meeting. That is unless the two guilty parties over the last twenty-five years decide to cut and run again. That can be accomplished by a couple of methods but either one should make it obvious to the public that Chemtura and the Ontario M.O.E. are finally well and truly caught in their decades long web of lies. Again I ask our new Woolwich Council to show your commitment to transparency and public comment by attending next Thursday's meeting.

Wednesday, January 21, 2015


Now this could really be funny. If they did it by accident, while having full access to the site, unlike the Public Advisory Committee; then they are truly hopeless. I could almost believe that the Ontario Ministry of the Environment (M.O.E.) could be that incompetent; but not so much Conestoga Rovers. That huge amounts of both contaminated groundwater as well as liquid production wastes have run off-site onto the neighbours' property is to date proven and essentially uncontested. Essentially uncontested in that the Peter Gray MTE Report was presented in October 2014 and to date Chemtura and fellow travellors are doing their undermining privately and behind the scenes rather than at CPAC. That any local politicians would believe their backdoor criticism is to their shame. Present your criticisms or rebuttals transparently and in public if you dare.

The contaminated groundwater and liquid toxic wastes left the site both to the immediate east of the RPE 1-5 pits as per Peter Gray and also as per myself they moved east into the Stroh Drain located twenty-feet off the Chemtura property line and parallel to it for close to 150 metres. This former wetland was according to a 1983 M.O.E. map the original location of GP1. That it is a former wetland has been confirmed by Jeff Merriman of Chemtura a few months back at a public CPAC meeting. This is why these public meetings are so important. It is a former wetland precisely because the Stroh Drain has accomplished its' job which was to drain the nearest wetlands on both the Chemtura and Stroh properties.

Chemtura, CRA and the Ontario M.O.E. were called out publicly last evening by me as a Delegate to Woolwich Council. Those three groups need to publicly respond to the MTE Report AND the relocation of GP1 to a more convenient, for them, location. Their backroom negotiating with Woolwich personnel to limit public access and ability to debate at CPAC is cowardly and shameful. If local politicians pretend to make debate more harmonious and civilized by removing my technical knowledge and expertise from CPAC's tool box; it will weaken CPAC. Is the goal to weaken CPAC technically as has been done by past Woolwich Councils in moments of crisis? What will this Council do?

The new Woolwich Council need to understand that pretending a problem doesn't exist by hiding behind a provincial ministry (M.O.E.) exactly as Chemtura does, is going to bite them. How shortsighted this Council will look if they play into Chemtura/CRA/M.O.E. hands by either handcuffing public debate or removing it altogether.

Tuesday, January 20, 2015


I will be a Delegation at tonite's Woolwich Council meeting. Perhaps Chemtura and the M.O.E. might want to consider that it is far easier for them to bob and weave and dissemble at public CPAC meetings than it is at Council meetings. Of even more significance is the more public nature of Council meetings. While we are fortunate to have CPAC meetings covered by Gail Martin of the Elmira Independent; we get coverage from both local papers at Council meetings. The Woolwich Observer reports on CPAC Delegations to Council while they have ignored public CPAC meetings for years. The irony is that one Observer owner has advised me over the years that CPAC became mundane, boring and routine whereas the other owner just recently advised me that CPAC meetings in his opinion have become hostile and aggressive of late. Come on Pat and Joe; please get your heads together and start covering public CPAC meetings. You are doing a disservice to your readers otherwise.

There are several areas of interest in Conestoga Rovers latest literary venture regarding the alleged cleanup of GP 1 & 2. This includes far more excavating then they originally stated they would do. It seems as if all their denials of deeper contamination were simply posturing. Once they got into it they found far more in ground contamination than they were ever willing to admit to CPAC and the public. Also of interest are the photographs included in their December 2014 Report. There are several other items of interest in this report which I will mention this evening in Council Chambers at 7 pm.. These will also be discussed at the next CPAC meeting on January 29, 2015 at 6 pm.. at the same location.

Monday, January 19, 2015


The former Varnicolor Chemical site on Union St. sits smack dab right on top of our highly contaminated Muncipal Aquifer. Back in the early 90's the Ontario Ministry of Environment (M.O.E.) advised us that none of their contamination had left their property or gone deeper into the Municipal Aquifer. Nearly a quarter of a century later, having been dealing with them on a continuous basis regarding Uniroyal/Chemtura Canada, I can confidently say that they would rather lie to the public than ever admit the whole extent of the environemental and human health damage that has occurred.

Despite many calls for reports, data and information over the years the M.O.E. have continued to lie and coverup. They have not told the public about off-site soil remediation/excavation of Varnicolor's (now Elmira Pump) neighbours. Nor have they advised of off-site collection and treatment of contaminated groundwater which had left the former Varnicolor site.

It is very possible that the owner of Elmira Pump has co-operated with and essentially spent his time and money cleaning up the mess left by Severin Argenton. It is even possible that a reasonably good job has been done over the course of the last twenty-two years. The problem is the secrecy and lack of transparency. This is the public's drinking water underneath that site. We have the right to know and to know in a timely fashion. The M.O.E. once again have proven that they are not honest brokers of the public interest. They keep everything secret so that when they make bad deals the public will not find out. It's all about maintaining the M.O.E.'s dubious credibility first and protecting the environment last.

I've recently heard that there will be an approach to Woolwich Council in order to subdivide the property further. I'm going to guess that the M.O.E. have finally, in secret, bestowed a Record of Site Condition upon the owner. Maybe it's legit and maybe not. I don't have any reason to suspect that the owner hasn't done everything asked of him. The problem isn't his credibility it's the total lack of credibility of the M.O.E. combined with the secrecy around this site since the late 90's. Furthermore I've been watching the Woolwich Township website (Council meetings) and seen nothing to date regarding this alleged upcoming Council item. Perhaps a note ahead of time to a couple of Councillors is in order.

Saturday, January 17, 2015


Lobbying is not illegal. Private, secret meetings with municipal councils are a no-no. A routine no-no however with little real oversight or accountability. Many municipalities avoid scrutiny by the Ombudsman by electing to have a group (LAS) within the Association of Municipalities of Ontario (AMO) determine whether they are living up to the rules demanding public meetings with very limited legitimate reasons for in camera meetings.

That said all of this can be avoided simply by meeting with for example the Mayor, Chief Administrative Officer and possibly a Councillor on their own. Hence no secret meeting of Council. Back in the good old days Uniroyal Chemical had their own employees on Council. Talk about a company town.

I've been writing about the terror being inflicted upon both Chemtura and the Ontario Ministry of the Environment (M.O.E.C.C.) by a half dozen citizen volunteers here in Elmira and Woolwich Township. The Chemtura Public Advisory Committee (CPAC) have been discovering and exposing the truth about massive discharges of Dioxins (Agent Orange) and DDT off the east side of the Chemtura property. This discharge appears to be ongoing; no longer by intentional active discharges from the now defunct east side pits but via storm and flood scouring of the south-east floodplain area encompassing both Chemtura's and their neighbour's property. The neighbour's property has been the unfortunate likely recipient of these chemicals from Uniroyal/Chemtura according to Peter Gray of MTE Consultants.

Pressure is being put upon the citizens representatives (ie. CPAC) by a couple of Council members. Is the rest of the new Council aware of this and do they approve? Our new Mayor based upon her sparkling personality, winning smile and willingness to talk with everybody has the potential to go a very long way in politics. I have long said that she has the tools to be the next Liz Witmer plus and could eventually be Premier of this province. Provided of course that her desire to make nice and promote peace and harmony at all costs doesn't mean make peace and harmony with parties whose self interest is grossly contrary to the public interest. That means Mayor Shantz that your current CPAC who are voluntarily working in the public interest should not be undermined or comprimised for the sake of promoting peace with either the corporate self interest of Chemtura in Elmira nor the pathetic, incompetent Ministry of the Environment.

You are going to have to choose and decide who is working on behalf of the public. Is it a thrice convicted world class polluter and their in-bed regulator (M.O.E.) or is it six unaffiliated Woolwich residents living in Elmira donating their time trying to restore both the drinking water and the environment? These six professionals have treated both Chemtura and the M.O.E. far more respectfully than the other way around. These six CPAC members do not fib, exaggerate or minimize issues the way the other two parties do.

Five of the six Council members have attended at least one of the last two CPAC meetings. That is to your credit. Now suck it up and attend a couple more. Insist that both Chemtura and the M.O.E. attend. Watch and listen. There are ten meetings per year or fourty during the last four years and do you think one meeting with Chemtura present and one meeting with neither Chemtura nor the M.O.E. present is representative of CPAC meetings? See you on Thursday January 29 at 6 pm..

Friday, January 16, 2015


O.K. last evening was a special Woolwich Council public budget meeting. Several Delegations spoke as to why their public service organizations required financial support. All of them were very worthy including the last delegate, Dr. Dan Holt. Dr. Dan spoke on behalf of the Chemtura Public Advisory Committee (CPAC) and he did an excellent job. That said I had the strong impression that Council were going to stiff CPAC. Comments, as honest as they were, to the effect that it should be the polluter (Chemtura) paying, rather than the Township had me concerned.

Councillor Murray Martin who has been on Council for at least a couple of earlier terms appeared to have missed Dr. Dan's major point that CPAC need the money to hire experts to test and study both soils and sediments off the east side of Chemtura's property. Dr. Dan stated that this area has been virtually ignored. In hindsight I realized that the other five Councillors (& Mayor) had attended either the October or November CPAC meetings and had heard about this and seen my two foot by four foot map showing the off-site east side area. Murray for whatever reason had been unable to attend.

Then Mark Bauman spoke. While many months ago he was skeptical about the east side, clearly he has both understood and embraced the MTE Consultants Report written by Peter Gray. While looking for occasional nods from the present CPAC & SWAT members that he was on track, he detailed the study results. I was very impressed with both his technical understanding and his obvious passion and belief that this issue and area needs to be addressed. Once again he managed through his time as a CPAC member to inform and turn Council around. Well done.

Here is where Council has a steep learning curve. Possibly/probably this still even includes Mark although he seems well up to speed on many CPAC issues. Our new Council while appropriately supporting their committee of Council (CPAC) last evening; nevertheless appear to want it both ways. This especially in my opinion includes our new Mayor, Sandy Shantz. She and at least some on Council want a better relationship between CPAC and Chemtura and the M.O.E.. Personally I would like a better relationship between Boko Haram, ISIS, President Assad of Syria and normal, decent human beings around the globe. I'm not going to get my wish and that is not the fault of the normal, decent human beings nor do I expect them to change.

While my example of course overstates the flaws and characteristics of Chemtura and the M.O.E; nevertheless the point is very valid. The Chemtura/M.O.E. leopard are not going to change their spots. They both are driven by self-interest not the public interest. I only hope that the Mayor and Council stop listening to Chemtura/M.O.E. rhetoric and start watching their actions and behaviour.

Thursday, January 15, 2015


Yesterday's Waterloo Region Record carrys this story "Water plant repairs to hit $800,000". For me the biggest surprise is the lack of urgency in getting this plant up and running. It's going on a year that it's been shut down and repairs aren't expected to be complete until early summer. The claim is that the Greenbrook Plant located by Highland Rd. and Stirling only supplies 5% of the daily water useage in the Region. Perhaps that's correct when you factor in Waterloo, Cambridge and the Townships but that plant is one of the oldest and I believe supplies a major proportion of Kitchener's tap water. If so then this really puts in perspective exactly how much water has been used by local manufacturing in the past. I know that the long proposed pipeline to Lake Erie has been delayed yet again and it seems that this is the silver lining in the job losses cloud with manufacturing having been exported to low wage, low environmental controls jurisdictions.

Wednesday, January 14, 2015


Tomorrow evening at 6 pm. there will be a special public council meeting to discuss the budget . Currently there are seven Delegations scheduled. The first five are citizens attending regarding annual grants given by the township to local worthy causes. The last two include former councillor Allan Poffenroth for the Kiwanis Club and Dr. Dan Holt regarding the Chemtura Public Advisory Committee (CPAC). The last council were generous and gave out a grant to CPAC which was used to very good purpose with the hiring of Peter Gray of MTE Consultants.

While it is doubtful that any decisions will be known tomorrow night, nevertheless when the final budget is presented it may well be an indication of where this new council's sentiments lie regarding Chemtura Canada. Certainly Chemtura's wishes are to defang and destabilize this CPAC which they have been unable to sucessfully deflect, distract and or bulldoze. That they are lobbying hard right now certain Council members pretty much goes without saying. I suppose it is Council's duty both as a group publicly to listen to presentations and as individuals, although lobbying the latter is probably much more effective. It is of course much easier to obfuscate and deceive individuals than a group. There is always the greater possibility that in a group at least one member will have greater knowledge of the facts than one individual.

Tuesday, January 13, 2015


Last evening a snap meeting open to the public was held at the Township building. There were a number of housekeeping matters that Chair Dr. Holt needed input on in time for things like this Thursday's Woolwich Township budget meeting. Dr. Holt will be a Delegate and details of his address can be heard in Council Chambers this Thursday evening at I believe 6 pm.. Next Monday at 5 pm. will be the usual Working Session of CPAC preparing for the monthly public CPAC meeting scheduled for Thursday January 29, 2015 also at 6 pm.. While these Working Sessions are open to the public and we have had occasional guests, Chemtura showed up once and rapidly departed when they found that I was present. They and their ilk prefer venues in which they can gild the lily without detailed , specific rebuttals to their storytelling.

I believe that CPAC are planning a special incentive to entice a recalcitrant Chemtura to attend this next CPAC meeting. While I don't believe that is necessary due to Chemtura's impending *Responsible Care reverification, nevertheless I have no problem with it. If Chemtura don't show on the 29th it will simply be a repeat of their disgraceful exit for 18 months from UPAC in 1999. The air sub-committee of UPAC which included Ron Ormson, Gerry Heiduburt and one or two others, appropriately suggested that Uniroyal were foot dragging on their air emissions. Dr. David Ash, Jeff Merriman, Dwight Este and Conestoga Rovers packed up their bags and walked out in the middle of the meeting. UPAC Chair Pat Mclean then privately and unecessarily sold the farm to get Uniroyal back to the table. Unnecessary concessions were made and I fear that something similar may be afoot with our new Council. Again there is absolutely no need of it. That Chemtura and the M.O.E. are lobbying Council beind the scenes is a given. It is the very sad and pathetic reality of democracy. Keep in mind when I say lobbying Council privately that that per se is unlikely and even contrary to the Municipal Act. Far more likely is that individual members of council and or senior staff are being lobbied privately.

Monday, January 12, 2015


While to date the formal Agenda has not been set by CPAC nevertheless one can pretty much know that certain items will be discussed. These include Peter Gray's MTE Report dealing with off-site flow of contaminants from the Chemtura property. They include the Stroh Drain and the "cleanup" of GP1 & 2. Perhaps there will also be discussion about the lines, scars or trenches visible courtesy of satellite photos.

How did all the other governmental agencies besides the M.O.E. and Grand River Conservation Authority (GRCA) miss the Stroh Drain? The Region of Waterloo and the Ministry of Natural Resources at a minimum have had dealings with this site over the decades. Perhaps even the federal government through the DFO and other departments dealing with waterways discharging into the Great lakes have had some involvement.

Facts, evidence and deductive reasoning are slowly unravelling the fairy tale CPAC and the public have been told for the last twenty-five years regarding the two gravel pits GP1 and GP2. This fairy tale required two huge elements to suceed. The first was absolute control over access to the site. The second was governmental protection, obfuscation and running interference with the media, public and CPAC. The Ministry of Environment have held up their end of the ongoing sweetheart deal and public disinformation campaign.

GP1 & 2 were not the final repository of DDT, Dioxins and Furans from Chemtura's (Uniroyal) east side pits. The entire south-east quadrant plus the neighbours' land are holding these Persistent Organic Pollutants (POPs). They continue to be flushed via storm events and spring floods down the Canagagigue Creek where they are resituated in the sediments and floodplain all the way to the Grand River and most likely beyond. This is with the knowledge and best wishes of the M.O.E. and our provincial government.

Absolute control over access to the site has been comprimised by both aerial photography and satellite imagery. Chemtura and the M.O.E. have a number of options. 1) They can fess up and tell the truth - highly unlikely that will happen 2) They can continue lying, deflecting and delaying - their favourite strategy 3) They can cut and run - Also a strong possibility. They will of course cry poor me and how they are being hounded and harassed but the net result is that the company will pick up their marbles and go home. The M.O.E. will mount a Public Relations campaign including slinging mud at me, CPAC and if they are really stupid at Woolwich Township.

Saturday, January 10, 2015


Conestoga Rovers killed a few more trees with their multiple reports dealing with the minor excavations (1 foot) , regrading and so called capping of GP1 & 2 during the last two summers. Allegedly they were removing dioxins and DDT from these areas but really not so much as you might think. There has been a whole lot of hokum going on with this so called "cleanup" from the beginning.

First off allegedly when Chemtura stopped pumping into and overfilling/overflowing their eastern pits (RPE1-3), the downslope gravel pits (GP1 & 2) dried up. Not so much. Groundwater flows into the bottom of them hence if and when they dried up that would simply be due to very low groundwater levels perhaps at the end of the summer.

GP1 has been miraculously and dramatically expanded over the years with a little assistance from Conestoga Rovers. They claim that among other evidence they have are recent topographical readings. Hmm! I'm not sure how slightly different ground surface elevations prove the existence of a former gravel pit at a particular spot.

Thirdly CRA's reports purport to deal with all relevant factors in the south-east quadrant regarding their "cleanup". They talk about surface topography, groundwater elevations, surface plantlife and vegetation groupings. They discuss forests, swamps, marshes and woodlots. Somehow miraculously they ignore the elephant in the room. That would be the Stroh Drain which is dug below the water table and drains both overland flow from both properties as well as groundwater from both properties. CRA go to great lengths in describing the characteristics of the swamp and wetlands that used to exist on the north-east corner of their "Study Boundary". Note they used to exist until the Stroh Drain did its' job and drained them. Amazingly not a peep out of CRA regarding this huge change and which in fact invalidates their entire Study. How the GRCA also missed this disappeared wetland is a mystery as well.

Friday, January 9, 2015


This update is somewhat later than usual as I've been a tad busy dealing with the 2,4,5-T Fact-Finding Panel's Report. Off-site pumping at W4, near the Howard St. watertower in Elmira, sucks. The goal is 3.5 litres per second and up until recently it had been at 11.4 litres per second for many years. The average pumping rate for November 2014 was 2.5 l/sec. Spinning Chemtura's roulette wheel gives us the excuse of mechanical breakdown. Keep in mind that over two years ago we were promised a tripling of off-site pumping rates. In the interim while testing allegedly towards that goal has been going on, the actual off-site pumping has been reduced. Way to go Chemtura!

Table A.3 advises us of the still horrific on-site groundwater contaminant concentrations. These will continue forever due to the presence of both LNAPL and DNAPL (light/dense non aqueous phase liquids combined with a refusal to do appropriate on-site source removal. Toluene is at 71,000 parts per billion with chlorobenzene over 3,000 ppb.. MBT, aniline and carboxin are in the thousands of parts per billion as well.

Table C.1 (surface water) still does not have results for NDEA, NDBA and NMOR. This is due to a breakdown of equipment at Chemtura's Guelph lab. Sorry but that doesn't cut it for me. Pay some money and either get it fixed or send it out to another lab.

Table D.1 gives us NDMA results off-site, west of Chemtura. They are ridiculously high as in 30-65 ppb with a drinking water standard of .009 ppb. This is after 16 1/2 years of off-site pumping. Keep up the good work Chemtura!

Table E.1 gives us incredibly high NDMA SOIL readings 100 feet below ground surface of 19-43 ppb. This is on the west side of the former Nutrite (Yara) but rest assurred two hydrogeologists have rebutted their own findings of free phase DNAPL beneth the Yara site. Chlorobenzene is at an incredible 9.8 ppm (parts per million) in the soil here as well. Again it being a DNAPL chemical is just a wild coincidence I'm sure.

Thank you Chemtura for sharing your "progress" with us. My great, great grandchildren will understand why your site is still a toxic dump in their lifetimes.

Thursday, January 8, 2015


In their report (page 67) the Panel are suggesting that there might be a little bit of creative writing going on regarding some data from the MTO. The MTO claim 20% of Ontario highways were sprayed per year whereas other documents indicate 50-70% of Ontario highweays were sprayed on an annual basis from 1953 to 1962 and between 1963 and 1973 more than 90% were sprayed on an annual basis. That is an awful lot of herbicide going into the air and onto the ground over and over again. As I've indicated earlier this includes District 6, Toronto. Just think about the 401, QEW, 427, Lakeshore Blvd., Don Valley Parkway etc.. Is it any wonder that 40-45% of Canadians will develop cancer in their lifetimes. Will this number eventually reach 100?
The standard protocol for the MOT was to have spraying stopped on windy and rainy days. The panel however suggests that that "seemed more diligent in some districts" than in others. Figure 4.4 shows a map of Ontario with the primary, secondary and tertiary highways outlined that were sprayed annually or semi-annually. Basically it appears as if literally every highway in southern Ontario was sprayed regularily with herbicide 2,4,5-T and the accompanying Dioxins.

Pages 72 and 73 are quite pathetic attempts by the Ontario Ministry of the Environment to understate the environmental damage. Allegedly they have measured for 2,4,5-T in streams throughout Ontario. That's pretty much rubbish. When they have taken samples and found detections they state that they weren't elevated levels. Really? Is 2,4,5-T a naturally occurring substance in streams and creeks? I think not. Secondly and this is truly a Catch 22. They state that measuring for Dioxin (2,3,7,8 TCDD) is not a useful marker for products containing 2,4,5-T because this worst Dioxin is so common in the environment. Unbelieveable. They use units of measure from parts per million, parts per billion and parts per trillion without telling the reader how to compare them to each other. They also brag about not exceeding the treated drinking water standards for 2,4,5-T. As the standard is .28 mg/l (parts per million) or 280 parts per billion or 280,000 parts per trillion that really isn't saying much. And these results are after treatment anyways. This is just typical M.O.E. puffery and nonsense.

In order of 2,4,5-T use , Hydro is first followed by the MOT and then the MNR. The concentrations of 2,3,7,8 TCDD were between 13 and 47 parts per million (ppm) from 1948 until 1971 and then the Panel "assumed" that once regulated the concentrations of Dioxin fell to .5 ppm from 1972-1973 and then further to .1 ppm from 1974 until 1979. Optimism or not the stretch from 1948 to 1971 was horrific and most likely the health effects have been challked up to smoking, drinking, overweight or just old age. There are Tables produced which give predicted residential and remote soil concentrations over the years from these government agencies whether by aerial or ground spraying. As far as I'm concerned they really are just a lot of noise. For conspiracy theorists this is one hell of a way to control population or at least the population of our elderly. It's also obvious that for future reference whether via fluoridation, foods, aerial spraying or whatever we are at the mercy of our own governments. God help us whether through malice or ignorance our governments are totally incompetent and without conscience. Both are fatal to we who live here.

Wednesday, January 7, 2015


Jeff Outhit of the Waterloo Region Record wrote an excellent article in yesterday's newspaper titled "Elmira water cleanup stalled". This article advises readers of the disagreement between Woolwich Township and the Ontario Ministry of the Environment. It also focuses on matters that both the M.O.E. and Chemtura would rather avoid. Chemtura are in P.R. mode and publicly not even addressing the current issues. Instead they obviously have been told to answer all difficult questions by simply speaking about unrelated sucesses (eg. the creek is healthier than it was) or by ridiculous comments such as the 2028 groundwater cleanup is a separate isse from creek contamination. So what if it allegedly is? It's your toxic contamination in the creek affecting both the natural environment and human health. Answer the damn questions!

The current issues on the east side of the Chemtura property in Elmira are huge. Besides the known toxicity of Dioxins and DDT there are immense credibility and legal liability issues at stake. To suggest that both Chemtura and the Ministry of Environment are staffed by professional liars and deceivers might deflect the technical debate that has been thrust upon them. Make no mistake both those parties do not wish to touch this hot potato. Draining of wetlands under the best of circumstances has become contoversial. Draining them in order to mobilize toxic compounds and send them downstream, off your own property, to share with the public is just nasty.

If concerns of surrepticious, contaminated groundwater diversion off site are also verified then basically our M.O.E. may as well pack their bags and leave town right alongside Chemtura. Both M.O.E. and Chemtura claims that they have no knowledge of the thirty year old manmade Drain running parallel and twenty feet off the Chemtura property are beyond ridiculous.

Tuesday, January 6, 2015


I am seeing a dichotomy between what was known, what was communicated to spraying crews and what actually happened. Decades later there is still both documentation as well as first hand testimony. Today I will mention Ministry of Natural Resources (Lands & Forests) as well as Ontario Hydro spraying. Remaining is the Ministry of Transport spraying along highways throughout Ontario including southern Ontario. This even means spraying along highways in densely populated areas such as Toronto. Also remaining and uninvestigated is further spraying of 2,4,5-T and Dioxin by municipalities on city owned lands such as parks, public areas perhaps even boulevards. Dear God but I hold such little hope for mankind's survival. We allow such unaccountable idiots to hold the reins of power.

The MNR had a Junior Ranger Program which provided youth (18 year old males) with summer employment. They were used as "ballon men" which means they placed coloured helium filled balloons to mark spray areas for aerial spraying. They also participated in backpack spraying and mixing and loading of the herbicide mixtures. There are a number of references to safety clothing such as goggles, neoprene gloves, respirators etc. There is a specific reference to ballon men as follows: "If ballon men are situated such that they are exposed to spray they should wear goggles and respirators with pesticide cartridges". Indeed they should. Much of the actual spraying was done by private contractors. A further reference states "There should be someone from MNR at the actual spray site ... As he will probably get sprayed, he should be wearing a respirator and goggles". Interesting.

The Ontario Hydro scenario is a little different. Theirs was mostly by truck and trailer versus aerial spraying although they too were involved with some backpack spraying. The difference is in the admissions of worker/student exposures. Was Ontario Hydro sloppier or were their reports simply more accurate and honest than those of the MNR? For example : Page 63 "As the men sprayed, they often directed the spray at each other or upwards". "They sprayed ahead of themselves, into the direction of travel and into the wind". "Three applicators- summer students -most heavily exposed." The Ontario Ministry of Labour in their infinite wisdom and intelligence responded by writing : "Summer program: spray is directed upwards to foliage, men wear leather gloves because neoprene is too hot, also too hot for masks, hose handlers and gloves get soaked."

The Ontario Hydro Employees Union published a study in 1984 which stated: "...Only 20% said they showered before leaving work, fewer than 25% claimed to wear a respirator while spraying, almost 50% wore work clothes after work, 90% said they got herbicide on their hands and arms while spraying, and almost 50% claimed they sprayed in winds over 20 mph." I was personally very skeptical about the stated aim of never spraying in winds greater than 4-7 miles per hour. Really? Who measures it and by what method? You go out in the morning with a crew and by ten am. the wind picks up to say 10 miles per hour and you shut down and all go home? Unlikely!

And our provincial government currently in power are suggesting that their responsibility ends with the advice that those still living and sick, with medical proof etc., may apply for Workmens' Compensation. Beyond contemptible.

Monday, January 5, 2015


This has not been easy or light reading. The Independent Fact-Finding Panel on Herbicide 2,4,5-T has not been nearly as exciting or enjoyable reading say as a book I obtained over the holidays titled "Rocky Mountain Locust". The author's psuedonym is I.M. Lastman and yes this is a book about the end of mankind (not the world) courtesy of a plague. The author is actually a local, Elmira resident and I must say that I am impressed with both his philosophy and his environmental grasp of the big picture. To date this is both an educational and very entertaining read. Michael P.S. is one hell of a writer.

I am going to quote from page 50 of the Fact-Finding Panel: "Both toxicological hazard assessment in laboratory animal studies and epidemiological assessment in human populations offer strengths and weaknesses in study design and in informing risk assessment of potentially exposed populations. Laboratory studies can limit and effectively control many variables, but extrapolating results of these studies to human populations is difficult. Conversely, results of studies in human populations can be applied directly to understanding potential adverse health outcomes in people, but controlling the wide array of variables in human populations is complex and difficult and often makes it challenging to use the results of these studies. Taken together, both toxicology and epidemiological studies can offer important insight when establishing causes of adverse health outcomes in human populations."

Pages 51 and 52 are a a Table (3.7) of the Assessment of Uncertainties of these two types of studies of 2,4,5-T and 2,3,7,8 TCDD. The left hand column lists twelve different Assumptions that have been made and the next column (middle) of the Table gives the Justification of the assumptions with the right hand column being the Effect on Analysis. While these Assumptions are reasonable and explainable they do of course affect the final analysis. The quote from the previous paragraph ends with "...(these) studies can offer important insight...".

This is what must never be forgotten. These studies are not omniscient nor are they without a ton of assumptions no matter how reasonable they appear to be. These studies OFFER IMPORTANT INSIGHTS. My take is very simple. Dioxins are incredibly complex and dangerous. No one knows how much exposure you've already had BEFORE you get dosed yet again via inhalation, ingestion or skin contact. Therefore my opinion is that no dose is "safe". The only "safe" dose is ZERO thank you very much. No one, nowhere has the right to tell me that further exposure to Dioxins are "safe". No company or environmental agency has the right to tell me that discharges of dioxins to the natural environment, at any level, via any method are O.K.. THEY ARE NOT. They are immoral and heinous and but for corrupt governments everywhere, they would be illegal around the globe.

Saturday, January 3, 2015


Here in Elmira during 2015 we are still trying to remove Dioxin (2,3,7,8 TCDD) from the natural environment, in direct confrontation with the Ontario Ministry of the Environment (MOECC). Their goal appears to be avoiding conflict with Chemtura Canada while astutely ignoring all evidence of contamination in the Canagagigue Creek and Grand River watershed. This contamination is in both the creek sediments and the floodplain all the way (5 miles) down to the Grand River. Just because the MOECC decided not to test the floodplains as extensively as they were in the mid 90's doesn't mean floodplain contamination has disappeared. Similarily just because the MOECC have chosen to focus on DDT and ignore Dioxins doesn't mean that Dioxins are at acceptable levels. They are not. Worse yet all indications and interpretations from unbiased observers would indicate that DDT and Dioxins are refreshed on a seasonal basis by flood waters hence this problem, despite the erstwhile wishes of Chemtura and the MOECC, will not disappear on its'own.

Apparently the U.S. had intentions of spraying Japan with Agent Orange in 1946 if the two atomic bombs had not come to fruition in time. The idea was to starve them into submission. Of course the starving would have been of the civilian population, certainly not of the military or political elites.

Britain used defoliants in the early 50's to deprive insurgents of cover as well as of food crops during the Malayan emergency. While my knowledge of that conflict is nil I have to assume that this was the last gasp of the British colonial empire in action. The U.S. then cheerfully used this as their precedent for spraying Vietnam for the same reasons.

The Vietnam Association for Victims of Agent Orange /dioxin filed suit against dozens of manufacturers in U.S. courts in early 2004. This unsucessful lawsuit named Dow, Monsanto, Diamond Shamrock, Thompson Chemicals, Hercules and our local favourite Uniroyal Chemical.

In 2007 the government of Canada offerred a $20,000 per person ex gratia payment to victims of the Agent Orange testing at Canadian Forces base Gagetown, New Brunswick. The victims filed suit two years later on behalf of 1,100 Canadian veterans and civilians and it as well was unsucessful. Clearly Canadian courts and governments are on a par with their U.S. counterparts.

If you Google Agent Orange you will find a 27 page writeup on the subject. I was most surprised to read about the long list of countries and victims of Agent Orange. They include Canada, U.S., Vietnam, Guam, Brazil, Cambodia, Korea, Laos, New Zealand, Philippines, Okinawa Japan and Thailand. Some of the exposures were war related and many were not. Most of the exposures, devastating diseases and injuries and deaths could have been avoided but for the unholy dollar. Corporate interests clearly outweigh those of civilian populations in the minds of politicians throughout the world. There are some notable exceptions. The full health costs of Agent Orange on civilian populations around the world will never be fully known. Will we as human beings learn from this and avoid the next disaster? Absolutely not with worldwide corporate domination of governments of all political stripes whether left, right, centre, democratic, socialistic, communist or whatever. Money talks and the human beings in power got there by being of low moral character.

Friday, January 2, 2015


At the end of Tuesday's (Dec. 30) posting I mentioned I'd be posting other records which supported serious health concerns around 2,4,5-T and Dioxin. Here is a bit of a mixed bag. I'll start with a June 7, 1972 letter from the Assistant District Forester, Vegetation Control, one E.J. Medicky. Mr. Medicky appears to have delusions of grandeur as he criticizes Mr. Zylestra, the Editor and Publisher of "This Week in the Madawaska Valley". The newspaper is located in Barry's Bay, Ontario.

Assistant Forester, Mr. Medicky is unhappy with an article in the newspaper titled "Spraying by Hydro may be dangerous". First off Mr. Medicky, while not mentioning his medical training, cheerfully diagnoses the multitude of health issues of Vietnamese civilians as having absolutely nothing to do with Dioxins. This from thousands of miles away. He then goes on to critique a 1965-1968 study done by Bionetics Research Laboratories, under contract to the Cancer Society. Apparently the Bionetics study alarmed both the U.S. and Canadian governments sufficiently enough that they put an upper limit .5 ppm on the concentration of 2,3,7,8 TCDD (Dioxin) which was in 2,4,5-T. This assures Mr. Medicky, makes it O.K. now for governments and Ontario Hydro to spray other human beings (not him) and property (not his).

Once again Ontario Hydro, six years later, are still lobbying for the continued use of 2,4,5-T at a council meeting of the Muskoka Lakes Council. The council had decided to withdraw permission for hydro to keep spraying in their area. Mr. F.A. Perttula talked about the costs involved to Hydro if they couldn't use 2,4,5-T. He also solemnly advised that "The toxicity of 2,4,5-T is only slightly more than aspirin". Another Hydro employee, Mr. Bryan Allen, inaccurately advised that 2,4,5-T would "break down in one year". Both the Council and some local residents seemed much more honestly informed on Dioxin issues than the senior Hydro employees. The writeup of the Council meeting was in the September 28, 1978 edition of the Beacon.

The Hamilton Spectator published an article in November 1969 titled "Herbicides declared dangerous". The article was based upon a recent study by the U.S. National Cancer Institute. There have also been several articles in the South Vietnamese press linking malformed babies to the U.S. spraying program. Costs to the U.S. pesticide industry if 2,4-D was banned were also mentioned.

The Thunder Bay Chronicle-Journal carried an article on December 4, 1976 titled "Deadly Assignment" in which the Ontario Ministry of the Environment (MOE) suggested that they are planning on extensive testing of Dioxin however they are extremely concerned for their own safety during this testing. The previous day the Globe and mail (Toronto) also published a similar story titled "Deadliest known chemical to be tested if Ministry can ensure safety in lab". The previous July an explosion at a chemical factory in Seveso, Italy occurred which released Dioxin into the air. This has intensified concerns by scientists around the globe.

Finally to give an indication as to how slowly governments and industry reacted to the enormous health problems of Dioxins mixed in with pesticides and herbicides (including 2,4,5-T); it should be pointed out that Wikipedia claims that as early as 1952, Monsanto informed the U.S. government that Dioxins were a part of their 2,4,5-T. Also manufacturer Boehringer in 1957 warned other producers that the high tempurature process producing 2,4,5-T caused Dioxin formation and how they could avoid so doing.

Horrific birth defects, still births, miscarriages and so much more all to maintain profits of the chemical industry. And governments around the world sat on their hands and indeed some still do. Here in Elmira in 2015 we continue to flush 2,3,7,8 TCDD down the Canagagigue Creek with the full knowledge of the Ontario M.O.E. who continue to run interference for Chemtura Canada, formerly Uniroyal Chemical. And those two parties wonder why I hold them in such contempt.