Friday, November 30, 2018


We had a grand total of twelve people present at the Technical Advisory Group meeting. That would include six TAG members and Chair, the Township's Support Specialist Lisa, and then five people in the audience. One was a spouse of a TAG member, two were Documentary filmmakers who both appeared in a Waterloo Region Record story yesterday describing Lanxess's attempts to sabotage their Documentary on Elmira's Water Crisis and finally two current members of CPAC.

Both chair Tiffany Svensson and CPAC and TAG member Dr. Sebastian Seibel-Achenbach mentioned that to date Lanxess and GHD, have not responded appropriately to concerns regarding the "Gap" area along the Lanxess/Stroh border. Sebastian also pointed out that GHD's responses and comments regarding off-site groundwater contamination issues are all focused on groundwater in the northern half of the eastern border. The guilty parties are studiously avoiding both the "Gap" and the Stroh Drain and how this man made Drain diverts both surface and groundwater eastwards and southwards eventually discharging into the Canagagigue Creek further downstream.

That said the Ontario MOE (MECP) have advised Lanxess in writing that they are not satisfied with their east side groundwater investigation to date. The MOE are recommending a Supplemental groundwater investigation because the swales and drainage ditch influence have not been properly investigated. We are advised that a final report on the Creek is due on the Fourteenth of December which really gives GHD no time to improve it through more investigation.

Susan Bryant asked Ms. Svensson about money being made available to TAG to get professional assistance regarding the threatened upcoming Risk Assessment. Ms. Svensson suggests that the Township are fine with TAG getting technical support. The problem I see is throwing good money at a proven bad idea, namely Site Specific Risk Assessment (SSRA).

TAG discussed some hypothetical upcoming Application Process for new TAG members. With Sandy as mayor and Lanxess happy with barely meeting the public (two or three citizens only), three to four times a year, don't count on any significant changes. Also the so called changes in the Terms of Reference will be given lip service only as all the other Terms of Reference for UPAC and CPAC have been over a period of decades. They are a joke and simply a make work project for Township staff to give the appearance of updating/improving public consultation.

TAG members provided updates on the September and October Lanxess Progress Reports as well as GHD responses to the MOE in regards to the groundwater report and last year's Annual Monitoring Report.

Sebastian teed me up for some interesting clarifications and comments. These included the complete lack of work being done as promised this fall on excavating small quantities of contaminated soil on the Stroh farm, along the Lanxess property line. Sebastian also asked me about the decades old and never ending comments in the Monthly Progress Reports to the effect that there are no new developments in remediating the former lagoons/ponds in Lanxess's south-west corner namely the RPW (retention ponds west) ponds. I advised that DNAPLS had gone through the bottom of the ponds decades ago and were still there happily, slowly dissolving for decades more into the on-site groundwater. I also clarified that ten chemicals during September and October of this year have higher concentrations at the upstream end of Lanxess than the downstream end. Likely the Bolender Park Landfill combined possibly with bank erosion, as suggested by Vivienne Delaney, is responsible.

Chair Ms. Svensson was uncomfortable with my input which in most honest public consultation venues would be bizarre. RAC/TAG and Lanxess however are not honest public consultation venues. This is not the fault of Chair Svensson as she was hired by mayor Shantz and is taking her direction from that woefully uninformed and biased individual who seems to be taking her direction from Lanxess Canada with a side order of MOE sour grapes thrown into the mix.

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