Friday, July 1, 2022


      It's been a very long wait. Literally years have gone by without that newspaper covering the games going on that pass for public consultation, community input and allegedly professional reports dealing with groundwater cleanup, DNAPLS, migrating dioxins/furans and the removal of toxic sediments and creekbank soils from the downstream Canagagigue Creek. Well better later than never although I suspect that the damage to a proper cleanup which we were promised more than three decades ago is irrevocable. As both Wilson Lau and Tiffany Svensson said at last week's  virtual TAG meeting, the Risk Assessment process will not clean up the already known "hotspots" in the Creek. They both suggested that "community concerns and acceptance" of the HHERA (Risk Assessment) might sway Lanxess Canada to do better. Concerned community members may be able to push hard enough but for that to happen those concerned community members need to be informed. That is starting to happen with the renewed interest in the issue by the Observer and with Leah Gerber's excellent reporting.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                     One week ago I quoted here in the Elmira Advocate the first sentence from Susan Bryant expressing her disappointment with Stantec's response to TAG's Risk Assessment concerns and comments. Reporter Leah Gerber has done the same only she included several more sentences from Susan. In its' entirety Susan said "I believe that TAG has asked for the very most meagre, doable remediation. Not dredge the creek, not stop possible sources that we may know about on the site. But simply the removal of a limited number of hotspots, all of limited extent. That's it. I had expected the risk assessment to delineate these areas for cleanup but this response to TAG's comments suggests that nothing need be done about these deposits, which science tells us are there, of persistent bioaccumulative toxins measuring orders of magnitude above acceptable levels. To me that is just not acceptable."                                                                                             

      I have not been in the habit of quoting Susan or applauding her actions since late 2007 however these comments of hers are accurate and correct including TAG asking for "...the very most meagre, doable remediation...".  Even if Lanxess does what TAG has requested it will be no more than a token "cleanup" of the creek. TAG has tacitly confirmed that during past public (virtual) discussions when they agreed to ask for remediation of ALL hotspots in the Creek not just the currently known ones.                                                                                                                                     

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