Wednesday, November 30, 2022


 Grand River Hospital in Kitchener. It's kind of hard to feel critical towards our health care institutions the last few years (2020, 21, 22) based upon their stepping up to fight Covid-19 head on. Yet... a funny thing happened today. Also many have been pointing out that the crisis in staffing and the apparently overburdened emergency rooms and operating rooms have been around for years if not decades. Interesting that. Interesting the media coverage and political verbiage also. And the billions of dollars literally being spent. And the weird fact for example that I've been living in Waterloo Region since I was five years old (I'm now 73) back when we only had K-W Hospital (now Grand River), St Mary's Hospital, Cambridge Memorial Hospital and a full size hospital over in Guelph plus a tiny hospital in Fergus, Listowel etc. And still do all these decades later when the population has ballooned some say precipitously as we have the largest immigration to Canada outside of Toronto for sure and maybe Montreal?

So what weird thing happened today? Well I politely advised that my one day stay in hospital that was extended to two days due to a high heart rate at the Pre-Op checkup was going to end on Wednesday afternoon. Now the blip on the radar was quickly and efficiently handled, in my opinion, very well. I have been taking medication since last Tuesday which is working very well and immediately. I was advised last Friday that all was well and to go ahead with my surgery which expressing confidence in all who advised me I did. Things went very well indeed and I suggested that if I passed all benchmarks and criteria regarding physiotherapy, walking etc. plus heart rate, blood pressure & temperature that I would be saying thank you and leaving. Well....Oh my God the overreaction not by all staff involved but certainly by many. It was as if I had thrown a stink bomb combined with dirty lyrics from a music video into a funeral procession for a young child. With very little plain common sense combined with a few big words and stern, professional stares they acted as if I was an idiot or a new MOM, or a minor child not a 73 year old adult who really prefers to spend what time he has left on earth in his own home versus even an additional unnecessary five minutes in hospital. Or quoting an old long gone friend "Alan why would you go to a hospital? They are full of sick people. " Geez sorry people but while I was mostly impressed with the professionalism and dedication I saw it really wasn't enough for me to hang around for extra. Send my meds to my local pharmacy, you've got my address, phone number and fax if something serious comes up. Sayanara folks.


Tuesday, November 29, 2022


 The Waterloo Region Record (K-W Record) have had a number of excellent environmental writers over the years including Bob Burt, Phil Jalsevac, Paige Desmond and Leah Gerber.  Also the Elmira Independent had a number including Roddy Turpin and Shirley Rennie not to mention Bob Verdun himself and Gail Gardner. Chuck Kuepfer also jogs my memory. The Woolwich Observer have had several very good ones many years ago and I apologize for my memory lapse although long term Steve Kannon's writing has always stirred me. Currently Leah Gerber who left the K-W Record is doing very good work environmentally for the Observer. 

A regular local newspaper is an absolute must in order to limit the blatant propaganda and greenwashing that nasty corporate polluters are capable of. Here locally we have had more than our share of polluters from corner garages leaking gas and diesel to our multi national, multi billion dollar Uniroyal Chemical and its' corporate successors Crompton, Chemtura and now Lanxess Canada. All of them are polluters as well as their property continues to leak and discharge into the natural environment. This leakage is by air, groundwater, surface water  and even vapours through the soil. It has never stopped albeit the blatant gross dumping days of Uniroyal Chemical are long behind us. The damage however continues on both to wildlife and to human receptors. 

The trick for polluters is to have more money to throw at both the legal courts and the courts of public opinion. Uniroyal long ago embedded themselves in the community both politically through employees on town council as well as via community sponsership and donations. Add to that membership in the former CCPA ( Canadian Chemical Producers Assoc. ) and the current CIAC ( Chemical Industry Assoc. of Canada )  and greenwashing can thrive. 

Political corruption whether via the Ontario Ministry of Environment or at the municiapl level has been ongoing. It does not include all councillors but obviously the Mayor needs to be on board with it. While former Mayor Todd Cowan was less involved/dominated by it he too felt the pressure. I still hope that either a public inquiry or some such investigation that isn't controlled by either Council or Lanxess Canada may yet occur. That is also where our local newspaper can have an impact. The environmental cleanup here has been shameful whereas the greenwashing and puffery have been world class. There are professionals in the field that know this but they have wisely kept their heads down. There is always a high cost involved in doing the right thing whereas going with the flow and not rocking the boat is usually very inexpensive. We've got a ton of those folks nearby.


Monday, November 28, 2022


 When will it end? When will TAG or the MECP or even Woolwich Township say no more bullsh.t, Lanxess do your damn job! That job includes proper pumping volumes as indicated by Target pumping rates clearly shown each month in the Progress Reports. GHD, consultants to Lanxess, also clearly indicate that they recommend that Lanxess "...maintain the target pumping rates greater than or equal to these rates." This is simply not happening.

The on-site shallow aquifer pumping rate in October was .2 litres per second an all time low since it started in 1997. The on-site municipal aquifer combined pumping rate for PW4 & PW5 is 4.7 l/sec and again it has failed to achieve that with only 4.4 l/sec in October 2022. 

The off-site pumping rate for four of the eight municipal aquifer pumping wells failed to achieve their Target rates. Three of these four that did achieve their Target rates were the lowest pumping (& Target) wells namely W6A, W6B, W8 at .2, .3 and .05 l/sec.  Overall the off-site Municipal Aquifer pumping wells are currently just above the pumping rate that Chemtura and Conestoga Rovers (CRA) determined in November 2012 had to be TRIPLED to achieve the mandated 2028 cleanup.  They have never even come close to Doubling much less TRIPLING their off-site pumping rates. Despite this there are no consequences, including charges, from the Ontario Ministry of the Environment (MECP). This is yet more reason why the knowledgeable and honest citizens in Elmira have such contempt for the alleged process, cleanup and  dishonest/deceptive words from Lanxess.   

Saturday, November 26, 2022


 A tiny bit of nitpicking on my part in that two of the east side pits were open until late 1993 not 1990 and in fact the word "open" is debatable. Perhaps it would be more accurate to say that two pits were still in use storing toxic chemicals in the ground until late 1993. 

On page 4 of the article it suggests that "...the swampy area, or the Gap, is relatively close to the pits." In fact the swampy area is exactly between the end of the largest swale or open ditch and the possible narrow  entranceway to the closest gravel pit namely GP-1 (gravel pit 1). Also keep in mind that this possible narrow entranceway is not shown on some maps as even existing hence that begs the legitimate question as to whether or not dioxins and DDT allegedly sampled in GP-1 really were there or not. In other words is the company morally capable of  "salting" soil samples with toxic chemicals in order to pretend that these chemicals stayed on their property rather than flowing off site onto the Stroh farm?

My source has indicated that the Stroh Drain was built in the fall of 1983 when the water table was lower. Sebastian Seibel-Achenbach's description and information in this article is indeed accurate and I dare say that on a general basis his information provided both at TAG and in the media puts his TAG colleagues to shame (especially Tiffany S.). Regarding Sebastian's appropriate concerns that a minor or partial cleanup will result in further erosion of toxins over time into the Creek sediments, that concern was also shared by Susan Bryant at the last TAG meeting.

Michael Mackin of Lanxess and Gary Wheeler of the Ontario Ministry of Environment (MECP) are both bullsh.t artists as well as bedfellows. While I do not mean this in the literal sense I certainly do mean it in the conspiratorial and collusion sense. Their words are disgusting, deceptive and untruthful. Also the claim was made by Michael Mackin that on two separate occasions  RAC, TAG and community members were invited to visit and tour the site. Well isn't that interesting. Only on one occasion was I invited and even then I had to dig in my heels to get the invite at the same time as the RAC and TAG members plus to include a couple more interested citizens and stakeholders that they did not want to attend. All in all the Observer have done a great job despite the lies and deception by the company and the MECP. 

Friday, November 25, 2022


 I've died and gone to heaven.  THREE WEEKS in a row the Observer have stepped up and bluntly yet accurately told the public about what is going on behind the scenes at TAG and in regards to the scam and sham being sold as a Risk Assessment (RA) of the Canagagigue Creek. This alleged RA is nothing more than a bunch of well paid Suits perverting science and mathematics in order to avoid decades late cleanup costs downstream from Uniroyal/Lanxess Canada in Elmira. Twenty-two Old Order Mennonite families lives and health have yet again been discarded in favour of corporate profits. The health of the downstream environment and all life forms in it have been minimized and further degraded again for corporate profit. And our Mayor and provincial politicians (& MECP) are helping Lanxess achieve this shameful goal.

There is much deception going on but the very last lying quote in the article by I believe the Ontario Ministry of Environment takes the cake and is beyond all fantasy namely :  "We will continue consulting with all stakeholders on the Lanxess environmental investigations and remediation measures." Filthy LIARS! I am a stakeholder. Dr. Dan Holt is a stakeholder. Ron Campbell is a stakeholder. Graham Chevreau is a stakeholder. Dr. Henry Regier is a stakeholder. Vivienne Delaney is a stakeholder etc. etc. Our legitimate Applications were THROWN OUT BY SANDY SHANTZ when she came to power as Mayor. WE and the PUBLUC are REFUSED THE RIGHT to either comment or ask any questions at "public" TAG meetings. At RAC meetings we are REFUSED the right to ask questions or make verbal comments other than three times a year a written Delegation may be presented without questions or followup.

Further lies and deception are in the words of Tiffany Svensson as she falsely and inaccurately defends the indefensible when she claims that there is evidence disproving the Stroh Drain as a threat or a source of contamination to the Canagagigue Creek. It is the usual Lanxess/GHD locational sampling biases going on. Multiple different dates and a few slightly different locations with numerous soil and sediment samples are taken for dioxins and DDT in their preferred locations by bridges crossing the Creek whereas all of four locations have been only sampled once for sediments in the Stroh Drain and three of those are all grouped together to the immediate west of the Martin swimming pond.  This Stroh Drain is 450 metres long and three of the four sample areas are within spitting distance of each other. Even at that there were numerous federal criteria exceedances including Dioxins/furans and DDD. Tiffany you need to resign because your corporate and MECP biases are blatantly showing. TAG allegedly is representing the public interest. What a croc! 


Thursday, November 24, 2022


 O.K. I do have confidence generally in both Prof. Greg Michalenko and in the K-W Chapter of the Council of Canadians. Others involved not so much. A series of four photographs were sent to me which my computer at first balked at opening for whatever reason. With assistance from my wife we have opened the photographs and examined them carefully. They allege to be photographs of the same location however from 1993 until 2018 which is not the twenty year time span indicated but actually 25 years apart. These four pictures certainly are different and the later ones show a ton of shrubs and trees unfortunately much in the foreground. As a result I honestly do not have any confidence based solely upon the four pictures that they are all of the same location which is supposed to be the whole idea. 

I believe that the idea of this exercise is to compliment the good work that the GRCA has done over many decades. I have no problem with that overall especially in the current political light of Dougie Ford emasculating Conservation Authorities and other environmental institutions. At the same time I long ago lost all my naivete regarding political institutions including the GRCA. Generally they are made up of municipal appointees with little or no competence and sometimes even less genuine respect for the environment.

I'll accept that the Ontario government (Doug Ford's Conservatives) are doing lots of harm environmentally but I'm not sure at all that these photographs are real proof of it.  

Wednesday, November 23, 2022


 The next RAC (Remediation Advisory Committee)  meeting is scheduled for Thursday December 8/22 at 5:30 pm. I presume that unfortunately it will still be virtual versus in person. The next TAG (Technical Advisory Group) meeting I believe is tentatively scheduled for January 26/23.

CPAC are in the discussion stage of future direction and action. We of course are disappointed that the Mayor has been returned although we are thrilled with many of the new members plus the dramatic change of the old guard. CPAC (Citizens Public Advisory Committee) are not beholden to Lanxess, GHD (consultants), Min. of Environment (MECP) and most thankfully NOT to Sandy Shantz. We will work with anybody who in good faith attempt to assist the public interest with proper cleanup of our Aquifers and our Creek (Canagagigue). 

Tuesday, November 22, 2022


 O.K. so I'll admit it. I was thrilled with yesterday's post poking fun at TAG membership. Despite the fact that there are a number of people on that committee that I both like and respect, nevertheless all humour usually has elements of truth in it and yesterday's post certainly did.  Frankly I admire Sebastian 's willingness and ability to sit there and listen to some of the bullsh.t and drivel. I will even give a tad of congrats to Susan B. for buttonholing Tiffany into categorically denying (lying?) any loss of hydraulic containment in the on-site Municipal Aquifers despite a year of failed pumping rates. 

All that being said it is the dog wagging the tail in that the polluter has far, far too much say in cleaning up the disgusting mess that they bought doubtless with backroom deals first with the Ontario Ministry of Environment. The MOE/MECP pulled that crap with Phillips Environmental when they wanted to purchase Varnicolor Chemical in Elmira, Ontario. The Control Order demanding full lateral and VERTICAL delineation of contamination was watered down such that the site is still under remediation today and the owners (Elmira Pump) have been left holding the bag on a site that was supposed to be remediated in ten years (i.e. 1995-2005) ,. In 2016 they were still working on a Risk Assessment approval which I'm supposed to be receiving a copy of. Nada yet! Oh and by the way that too much say by Chemtura/Lanxess includes the so called municipal appointees to the committee of council (TAG etc.).

Monday, November 21, 2022


 Originally it was suggested likely at TAG (Technical Advisory Group) that applicants needed to apply in writing by last Friday November 18, 2022. However as of the day before I was advised that that had been changed to a date sometime in January. As per my comments regarding TAG over the last few posts I am going to include some pre-qualifications. Firstly these pre-qualifications are not for the purpose of discouraging applicants as much as to simply save you time and trouble if you are unable to meet them.

1) Active professional status as a hydrogeologist, biologist or risk assessor. Combined with this is a strong preference for very busy active professionals with severely limited time to read and research the facts. 

2 Professionals with the requisite survival skills of deference and  unwillingness to displease their employers doing business with the Ontario Ministry of Environment (MECP), Lanxess or GHD (consultants) etc.

3) Professionals with a preferred  bias in favour of authority figures. This includes the previous stated MECP plus municipal mayors and regional chairs.

4) If "professionals" of this nature are not available in requisite numbers then totally unqualified candidates with zero environmental background or interest are welcomed.

5) These candidates however preferably should have the same constraints as 1) - 3) above.

6) In an extreme volunteer shortage position once again Sandy Shantz's Elmira Curling Club friends are encouraged to apply.

Long haired, freaky looking candidates need not apply unless fully vetted by Lanxess Canada, Dupont or Union Carbide all world class polluters with a well known penchant for puffery. 

Saturday, November 19, 2022


 Tiffany says it's fine. So does Lanxess and their consultants GHD. The Ontario Ministry of Environment used to rave about UPAC and CPAC back in the early 2000's. They hated CPAC from 2011-Aug. 2015 when Dr. Dan Holt was Chair and Susan Bryant and Pat Mclean were off the committee. Woolwich Township according to Sandy Shantz think that TAG are the best thing since sliced bread. Most TAG members like TAG and will likely reapply by January. 

Back in the late 1990s Glenys McMullen of APTE referred to UPAC (Uniroyal Public Advisory Committee) as the Uniroyal Pollution Appreciation Club which was essentially accurate. I early on referred to RAC (Remediation Advisory Committee) as the Really Awful Committee. TAG I will go  easy on referring to them as the Too Agreeable Group. Refer to yesterday's Blog post to see why they are so "agreeable" and hence ineffective for real environmental cleanup.

What does Woolwich Township gain from lying about and hiding local polluters? Firstly they gain the goodwill of all our dirty polluters. Secondly selling Uniroyal Chemical as the sole significant polluter in town gains the goodwill of the Ontario Ministry of Environment (MOE) and the provincial government. It's easier to sell having "overlooked" one bad apple rather than three, five or ten all in the small town  of Elmira, Ontario. What municipal governments mainly do is suck up to the big boys (Toronto) who in turn suck up to the bigger boys yet namely Ottawa. It's the upper tier provincial and federal governments that have the funding for the big projects whether for the Arts, infrastructure including roads and bridges, Light Rail Transit (LRT), airports and the like. What lower tier government has the balls to say no to them? Of course there is a cost to placing 100% of the blame onto a multi national, multi billion dollar corporation like Uniroyal Chemical and we are all paying it. That cost is the "sweetheart deal" required for Uniroyal to stop fighting the MOE  now known as the MECP. Uniroyal were handed the keys to the Kingdom regarding the cleanup. Not only did Uniroyal stop blaming the other major polluters in town (Varnicolor Chemical and Nutrite/Yara) but they were made both private and public guarantees regarding cleanup and hence costs of the then KNOWN contamination. Unknown contamination was supposed to be covered in MOE/MECP Control Orders and the like but we the citizens have since learned that Control Orders are essentially toilet paper to be flushed down the toilet as inappropriately and unilaterally determined by the MOE/MECP.  

There is "organized" crime both private and public. Public organized crime (i.e. government) is much more powerful.

Friday, November 18, 2022


 I heard some honest, plain speaking last evening and it was wonderful. After decades of smooth talking, professional b/s artists and professional liars and spinmeisters; hearing again local citizens speak bluntly and clearly regarding the calculated, self-serving mess that passes for "Public Consultation" in Elmira is wonderful. Don't misunderstand me here. The majority of TAG members are decent human beings put into awkward and even career dangerous positions. While I won't repeat here the metaphors used last evening describing their tenuous tightrope walking (ha my own metaphor)  nevertheless the meanings were clear. Professional hydrogeologists, soil specialists and apparently risk assessment specialists will not jeopardize their careers by bluntly speaking out and criticizing Lanxess, their consultants GHD or the Ontario Ministry of Environment. Environmental consulting and remediation is an incestuous industry and when a company agrees to send one of their young professionals to represent them it is on the understanding that their employee will NOT embarrass them by speaking too strongly or too bluntly no matter how threatened the public interest is. Discretion, diplomacy, tact are paramount. Honesty, clarity and hard hitting facts are the enemy when your company contracts and business hang in the balance. In heavy industry and manufacturing physical carelessness can result in the literal loss of fingers or worse. In professional environmental consulting and remediation verbal carelessness results in the figurative loss of fingers and worse. 

Note I stated that these young professionals are representing their companies who operate in the environmental industry. That is the main problem. These professionals are not local citizens representing the public interest of their community. They have been appointed by the local power structure (Mayor, polluter, Min. of Environment etc.)  and their job is NOT to fix anything so much as to give the appearance of soft spoken, highly intelligent human beings gently pushing polluters to do the right thing out of the goodness of their hearts. Corporations do not have hearts. They have bottom lines and per share profit goals. No more and no less.

Citizens please wake up. You are NOT being well represented by TAG (technical advisory group). They are representing their own interests not yours or as then councillor Pat Merlihan said in 2015 the makeup of TAG is "cringeworthy".  

Thursday, November 17, 2022


 Two items today. Firstly liars lie so why am even I occasionally surprised by them? Over the last year or two I've heard at a TAG meeting once or twice suggestions of slight leakage from the UACTS (Upper Aquifer Containment & Treatment System) into the Canagagigue Creek. No big deal just a small concern allegedly when the Creek rose and there was what we were told were "creek bank storage effects" whereby briefly the Creek raised the groundwater levels along the Creek higher than the surface water levels. At that point groundwater would then flow back into the Creek as there was a temporary loss of containment. Well I got serious and started looking into it and it is my opinion that the MECP and Lanxess/GHD are full of sh.t. I know that's no shocker but geez Louise can't they be honest and straightforward at least occasionally?

"Tiffany's Whopper" may or may not be an exaggeration. After being pressed by Susan Bryant for her opinion regarding months (ha -years) of under pumping the Municipal Aquifers on site, Tiffany fully and completely said there was no problem. According to Tiffany the fact that Lanxess's own consultants strongly recommend that they pump at or HIGHER than the Target Rate for on-site wells PW4 & 5 which they haven't done for the past YEAR is not a problem. Tiffany claims that there has been no loss of hydraulic containment leading to leakage from the grossly contaminated Uniroyal/Lanxess site  into the off-site Elmira Aquifers. Sorry but I think that is a whopper! 

Back to the Upper Aquifer (UA). Without a single word at CPAC the slippery slime in charge have been reducing the pumping at the series of shallow aquifer wells along the west side of the Creek (the "Gig") on their property. This "slippage" has been going on for years but has been most obvious for the last 1 1/2 - 2 years..Originally these containment wells were pumping at over 2 litres per second which was slowly reduced to 1 litre/sec and then since 2021 down to .5 l/sec. Last month (Oct.) it hit a record low of .2 l/sec. 

Wednesday, November 16, 2022


 Where to start? 

Our Elmira drinking water Aquifers will not achieve drinking water standards by 2028. Especially for NDMA. From 1990 until approximately 2016 we were vehemently told otherwise. i.e. we the citizens were lied to for 26 years. Slimy bastards with conveniently zero consequences on their part.

The Canagagigue Creek soils and sediments are contaminated with Persistent Organic Pollutants (POPs) for the full five miles downstream to the Grand River and most likely much further. The HHERA (Risk Assessment) is nearly complete and we have been told by a bunch of self-serving, credentialed non victim bureaucrats and suits that all human health risks are acceptable. Currently the RA is suggesting minor cleanup efforts at and very close to the Lanxess site only. Not even the so called known "hot spots" down stream are scheduled for cleanup. 

Hence both known on site and off site source removal is not happening. This includes the DNAPLS on and off site that have been covered up and lied about since the late 1980s and early 1990s. It also includes known contamination beneath both east and west side pits and lagoons that received only partial cleanup in 1970 and 1993. 

Off-site contamination literally occurred north, south, east and west of the Uniroyal/Lanxess site. We were told for decades that other than contaminated groundwater discharging eastwards into the Canagagigue and going downstream that everything else went south-west via aquifers. Those were blatant lies.

Public Consultation has devolved into a laughing stock. TAG are a sham of citizens who wouldn't say crap if their mouth was full of it. They are picked as much or more for their willingness and ability to get along with the professional liars (Lanxess & MECP) as for their professional credentials. The public (& experienced CPAC members) are refused access to ask any questions or add any verbal comments to so called public meetings. Credit for this goes to Chemtura/MECP/Sandy Shantz and more. 

There is a ton more but it will come out at a later date.


Tuesday, November 15, 2022


Refusing to even receive or look at opposing evidence by our authorities is an example of their corruption. When a pair of professionally tested soil sample results were offered to our various authorities they recoiled in shock and fear. From Woolwich Council, TAG, Ministry of Environment (MECP), Region of Waterloo, GRCA and on and on they all went into serious ostrich mode. The excuses ranged from serious bullsh.t to plaintive wailing about process and procedures up to and including simply no response at all. I gave these various allegedly responsible bodies the name of the professional lab involved and invited questions for clarification. Da nada! Nothing! 

Undeterred I did what I do and sent the professional lab results to all the bodies except one. I also posted the lab report showing dioxin/furan detections here on the Elmira Advocate. Not a peep. Not a response. Not a question. Other than Lanxess (Ramin Ansari) all parties bravely pulled a Doug Ford and hid under their desks until the cloud passed.  Now don't get me wrong. Ramin fairly promptly incorporated these lab results incorrectly into one of his consultant's (GHD) reports alleging that they were sediment samples which they weren't. They were SOIL samples Ramin, exactly as it says on the lab report. Geesh!

Out of respect I did not send the results to TAG despite the pathetic and ridiculous whining of their Chair suggesting that somehow these results were inappropriate, wrong, inaccurate or whatever. The respect I just mentioned was not for TAG or their well paid (Lanxess/Woolwich?) Chair.  

Ask yourselves exactly how tied these political and bureaucratic bodies are to Lanxess Canada's position that they go so far as to refuse to receive professional lab reports showing dioxin/furan soil contamination on the next door neighbour's property (Stroh). Oh did I mention? Despite the expensive cost of sampling and analyzing soil samples for dioxins they were offered FREE to all these scum. Citizens paid for them while our totally perverted and corrupt authorities ran for cover rather than be in possession of evidence of obfuscation and corruption by the parties (Lanxess/MECP) they are protecting. 

Monday, November 14, 2022


 The definition above is from the Webster's dictionary. The $64,000 question is who are the conspirators and what is the evil purpose? While the two answers are easy the route to get to them has not been. No one in a democracy ever wants to believe that their political systems and politicians are inherently corrupt. No one really wants to believe that they and their parents generation before ever allowed things to get so out of control. To help you the reader along this path think about two recent events. Our (mostly departing) regional councillors have just gifted themselves taxpayer paid for health care for life.  All it requires is a single four year term on regional council and they and their families never need to buy health care insurance or pay out of pocket for health expenses ever again. That isn't a two tiered  health care system as much as a two class system here namely the haves and the have nots or the political class and all the rest of us. The second event is the macabre situation of Waterloo Region District School Board (WRDSB) trustees (a cabal?) voting another democratically elected trustee off the island. Did Mike Ramsay attack, shoot, hit or stab a fellow trustee? No! Did he make death threats or other threats of bodily harm against any of them? No! The nasty, arrogant bugger actually had the brass and nerve to disagree with the majority of his colleagues. Scandalous!

So what is the evil purpose? It is to deceive the population into believing that even so much as a mediocre cleanup of the natural environment has occurred here in Elmira, Ontario after the internationally known 1989 Elmira Crisis. Our water supply was grossly polluted by Uniroyal Chemical as was the Canagagigue Creek, the air and soils in and around the very large Uniroyal property straddling the same creek. 

How can this be you ask? Is it Uniroyal and corporate successors' word against local citizens. Oh no that wouldn't cut it. Instead via any and all means Uniroyal and corporate successors obtained multiple agreements. Never with the general population and never even with most of the local citizen activists. What they did was to make sweetheart deals primarily with all the almost equally guilty political groups who either failed in their duties to protect us the citizens in the first place or worse yet who were bribed, extorted or seduced into complicity with them. It is so much easier and less expensive apparently to corrupt our leading politicians than it is to actually do the cleanup job properly. It is our own political representatives who yet again have sold the public interest down the drain to their everlasting shame. Now of course the honest politicians out there, and there are some, require pretty extensive and heavy duty lying to bring them around. That's all in a days work for our local polluter and his co-opted political friends.  

Saturday, November 12, 2022


 Kudos to the Woolwich Observer for publishing my Letter To The Editor in its' entirety versus editing it and then publishing. Furthermore my Letter To...  also states "Is there one overarching conflict of interest that has subverted our Ministry of Environment?" Both of these statements while accurate also strongly suggest corruption of one form or another. I suggest that bravo to the Woolwich Observer as they are in my opinion demonstrating courage for the benefit of the public interest versus hiding and remaining quiet due to libel chill or other intimidation.

I noticed carefully a few comments by Susan Bryant at last Thursday's TAG meeting. I did indicate yesterday her comments regarding a PROTEST. Interesting and Lord knows long overdue but I am skeptical it will happen. In reference to the Stroh Drain soils and sediments she did give minimal support to Sebastian when she stated that the area is "under sampled perhaps". Definitely less than unconditional support but better than the rest of TAG. 

Still zero answers as to where PCBs in the Creek are coming from. Unbelievable !  I also loved Sebastian Seibel-Achenbach's portrayal of the Min. of Environment's (MECP) logic being "specious" as to why the Stroh Drain isn't a source of contamination to the Creek. What the public interest has long required is more citizens stepping up and calling the MOE/MECP out for the bullsh.t and nonsense.

Neither Tiffany nor Wilson would respond to statements by Sebastian regarding dioxins/furans found in the sediments of the Stroh Drain at thirty times higher than the federal criteria of .85 TEQ ppt . Neither would they directly respond to strong criticism about the shallow depth of sediment sampling nor to the fact that the MECP tested the lean portions of fish versus the higher concentration areas such as the liver, other organs and fatty areas. Instead both Tiffany and Wilson went off sideways with Wilson suggesting that shovels are O.K. for shallow underwater sampling of sediments versus professional core samplers  and Tiffany blathering about location CANCR5 having the highest sediment concentrations of contaminants (it doesn't) and that a year's worth of under pumping of the Municipal aquifers on the Uniroyal/Lanxess site isn't a cause for worry about loss of hydraulic containment permitting on-site contaminated groundwater to flow off-site (it is).

Some good signs lately but not much from TAG.    

Friday, November 11, 2022

SHAME ON TAG (Technical Advisory Group)

Below is an e-mail that I sent to the Citizens Public Advisory Committee (CPAC) this morning partially describing last evening's public but virtual TAG meeting.


CPAC+:  Once in a very long while we swing for the fences and 
hit a home run. Well it's happened. I wish that I 
(and possibly Sebastian) knew at last night's TAG meeting that 
the Observer had published my very strong, very blunt and very 
critical Letter To The Editor regarding what Sebastian was 
describing last evening to his TAG colleagues. Not a one of them 
supported him although Susan B. to her credit did speak strongly 
in favour of removing the known (but not unknown due to lack of 
representative sampling) "hot spots" along the Creek. She wants 
support from TAG and has it at least in principle and as possibly 
a bargaining chip. When push comes to shove TAG will also 
likely drop their DEMAND (ha: from their knees with hands in a 
praying position) that the "hot spots" be remediated.

Sebastian was strongly and appropriately criticizing the MECP  
Sediment & Fish sampling report released last September. 
Sebastian you were magnificent whereas your colleagues are 
stunningly biased, and self-servingly blind. Wilson's arguments 
about shovels being O.K. are garbage!  Funny when Joe Kelly 
was discussing the loss of sediment fines from using shovels 
two or three years ago, not a peep out of Wilson. Now it's all 
about cross contamination b/s. IT'S THE LOSS OF FINES 

That .itch Tiffany also argued against Sebastian by suggesting
 falsely that location CANCR 5 upstream of the mouth of the 
Stroh Drain/Martin Creek has the highest concentrations.  It 
does for DDT in sediments but the lowest concentrations of 
dioxin/furans of all the locations from Uniroyal/Lanxess to the 
Grand River. PAHs have the highest sediment concentrations 
downstream well below CANCR5 at CANCR6 (New Jerusalem 
Rd.) with CANCR5 being the second LOWEST concentrations.

Similarly Tiffany Svensson also behaved like a Lanxess/MECP 
apologist by minimizing the failure of the on-site Municipal
Aquifer pumping wells PW4 & 5. Since September 2021 they 
have made their TARGET PUMPING RATE of 4.7 l/sec only 
ONCE namely January 2022 exactly at 4.7 l/s. Every other 
month has been below that TARGET RATE up to and including
 September 2022.  In the footnotes GHD clearly state that they 
recommend that Lanxess pump at the Target Rate or HIGHER!!! 

I had suggested to Dr. Dan, Viv and Richard that perhaps the 
cloud of Sandy's being re-elected might have a silver lining.  By
 the way Dr. Dan worked his butt off with much assistance from 
Sebastian and others during the election! The silver lining is if 
the Observer choose to finally cover RAC and TAG meetings 
properly. Leah Gerber (Observer) was there virtually last night.
 Also the silver lining is if the Observer are more welcoming of
 Letters To The Editor from CPAC members (Dr. Dan recently).
 My Letter To The Editor was published yesterday. I let the 
MECP and Lanxess have it right between the eyes. I also 
brought up the well hidden fact seen by myself, Sebastian 
and Mark Bauman that there is a pipe diverting some water 
from the Stroh Drain/Martin Creek into the Martin swimming 
pond. I have little confidence that Mark would ever honestly 
testify to what he saw and later described to me whereas 
Sebastian and I together traced the pipe from the northern 
end of the pond due south into the swimming pond 
("water" was running at the time).

Sebastian your colleagues are playing a game and Tiffany 
and Wilson are hard on board the Lanxess/MECP train. 
David Hofbauer had very little to say last evening but at 
least he wasn't disagreeing or criticizing your position. 
Linda Dickson is out of her depth. In the past Dustin Martin
concerned me although recently somewhat like David 
H. he hasn't been attending much (Guilt???)  Susan is and
always has played her own game. Sebastian what did you
 think of her "threat" right at the end of the meeting regarding
 a PROTEST if the hot spots aren't cleaned up? I believe that
 her TAG colleagues will wish her well and perhaps other than
 yourself, leave her to protest on her own. Also I think that it's
 a hollow threat although I wish it weren't.

Alan Marshall .    


Thursday, November 10, 2022


 Why wouldn't they? There are zero consequences for them. Plus cleanup costs money which they'd rather send to their shareholders than to the victims of their immoral and illegal behaviours here in Elmira. They also have Woolwich Township and the Ontario Ministry of Environment wrapped around their little fingers. As far as citizens go TAG will never so much as speak harshly to them no matter what lies and bullshit they are currently offering.  Most TAG members appear to be more interested in being nice and getting along versus standing up and speaking loudly and clearly on behalf of both the environment and the local citizens. That said yes some TAG members have oh so politely and nicely asked/begged/cajoled Lanxess to do more, generally with nothing but lip service from the company sometimes combined with yet another round of sampling or another less than useless report. It's all about appearances for the company and as Dr. Richard Jackson (1st TAG Chair) walked from TAG so would and should any honest, public interest minded Chair.

I've just gone over the pumping rates for the on-site Municipal Aquifer wells at Lanxess namely PW4 and PW5. In the last year the combined Target Pumping Rate has been achieved ONCE ! That was in January 2022 when the on-site pumping of both wells exactly met the Target Rate of 4.7 litres per second. It was another four months prior to that when the pumping rate last met the Target Rate. This of course is despite GHD in the footnotes beneath the Table of Average Daily Pumping Rates stating unequivocally that they recommend that Lanxess ACHIEVE OR EXCEED the Target Pumping Rates. That is in order to pump and treat enough groundwater to successfully contain the grossly polluted groundwater from flowing off-site and further contaminating the Elmira Aquifers which is exactly what has been happening for the last year at a minimum. Absolute shame on the Ontario Ministry of Environment (MECP) for allowing this to happen once, much less ongoing. The fact that nobody whether MECP, TAG, RAC or Woolwich Township are not screaming at Lanxess about this makes it clear to this well informed citizen that none of them give a rat's ass!  The cleanup is and always has been a sham. It's about lip service, going through the motions and always ensuring that the polluter is in firm and complete control of the entire "cleanup" including which citizens are acceptable to Lanxess on TAG and keeping the best informed,  honest  and least prone to polluter and MECP influence at bay.

Wednesday, November 9, 2022


 Their bias has become just so blatant.  It  includes Sebastian (TAG member) appealing to them to discuss and debate seriously the dioxin/furan results far in exceedance of criteria in sediments in the Stroh Drain along with the presence of DDT breakdown products . It includes me going on three years ago providing each and every TAG member with colour maps showing agreed upon topographical contours (i.e. ground surface elevations) clearly showing that Uniroyal Chemical's contaminated waste waters from their east side ponds flowed off-site onto the Stroh property into a low lying area where they likely settled out into the soils. Sebastian has begged Lanxess and the MECP to take soil samples in and around the Stroh Drain and test for dioxins/furans, DDT and other toxic contaminants. TAG have at least given muted support to that suggestion however to no avail with Lanxess/MECP. 

Regarding the map plus proof and evidence that the topographical contours were accurate and agreed upon I also provided technical references of Conestoga Rovers (CRA) and the Ministry of Environment (MECP) to much of the data on the map. TAG and their Chair Tiffany Svensson absolutely refused to discuss or debate my formal written Delegation to them. That is contemptible and disgusting and totally without any merit whatsoever. This is hard data and evidence, not produced or manufactured by me, but by the MECP, RMOW, CRA  clearly showing that Lanxess and friends conclusions are at odds with their own data and technical reports. Meanwhile TAG's so called "experts" sit on their hands and look the other way. 

Over a month ago I verbally presented and sent a written Delegation to RAC regarding the MECP's only recently released September 2020 Sediment and Fish Monitoring Report. Just like at TAG, RAC allegedly listen but do not care or comprehend apparently. Zero questions or comments then and zero since. Not a peep. At tomorrow's virtual TAG meeting (6:30 pm.) Sebastian will be presenting his analysis of the same report. Once again TAG will cover their eyes and ears even when one of their own members has something serious to tell them. Perhaps at the very least TAG and their Chair will murmur and cluck sympathetic words while averting their eyes. It's the least they can do for an honest member who despite lacking some of their scientific credentials has ten times the courage and heart of the rest of them together.  

TAG and RAC are doing their assigned jobs which is principally to be polite good little boys and girls and do not rock the boat or raise any consternation. Politicians by their own admission know better than us and they've thrown their lot in with the professional liars and any naughty boys and girls will suffer the consequences whether professional or personal including private defamation.


Tuesday, November 8, 2022


 Some say that harsh words are wasted when describing the subsets of human beings who enjoy lying and deceiving the rest of us. I disagree. They should be called out and they should be called out by name. This would include names like Ramin, Josef, David, Sandy, George, Dwight and Jeff. In the case of the last one he has retired and allegedly is actually doing charitable work . While that may not excuse his past behaviour it does however put him in perspective. It never fails to amaze me how some people are so successfully able to lead one life on the job and a totally different life off the job. Strange unless they are continuing to fake it as they have on the job. 

Just to be clear these names include employees of Uniroyal, Chemtura, Lanxess, MECP and Woolwich Township. That said I've recently received disturbing information that might somewhat mitigate the behaviour of the "employee" of Woolwich Township. Also apologies to those decent people with the same first names as those listed above.

Apparently Lanxess obviously with the acquiesence of Woolwich Township, want to "negotiate" a new understanding  regarding the timing of the completion of the restoration of the Elmira Aquifers. Apparently they feel that long term (as in decades) lying about that is just fine. Nothing to see here folks. Move along. More new lies and manipulation to follow. The most recent suggestions from the Region of Waterloo as well as from Dr. Richard Jackson are that 2050-2060 may be possible. No one is really sure and I can tell you that at the rate Lanxess are failing with their pump and treat it will likely be longer than that. 

How terribly convenient that the destroyer of our Elmira Aquifers and their corporate successors now want to discuss a new proposed cleanup date with the shameful so called citizens committee known as TAG. There are a number of good and decent people on that committee however the majority (especially the Chair) have proven themselves to be unduly under the influence of  both Lanxess and the Ontario Ministry of Environment (MECP). That is where the "shameful" remark comes in. 

We the citizens of Elmira and Woolwich were lied to about the completion cleanup date from about 1994 until about 2015. Many, many times Uniroyal, Crompton and Chemtura had the opportunity to come clean. They and the MECP chose to continue the charade and lies. The 2010-2014 Woolwich Council did step up. They told it straight when they accepted CPAC's written statement in June 2012 advising that 2028 cleanup would not happen. This was under the Chairmanship of Dr. Dan Holt. For this and other good deeds all the guilty parties ganged up on CPAC, lied and manipulated, including manufacturing a so called "crisis". Uniroyal had stormed out of a UPAC meeting back in 1998 and refused to attend those public meetings for at least six months until the then Chair Pat McLean gave them concessions to return. They did it again in very late 2014 and Woolwich Township under Sandy Shantz capitulated yet again.

And now the pile of stinking, rotten filth want TAG to negotiate a new deal. How about this Lanxess. Take a godd..n  hike but leave a few hundred million dollars behind to clean up your mess and maybe even more to pay for health care to those whose health you have ruined. That is the most generous "deal" you should ever get for your reprehensible  assaults on the environment and on human health.

Saturday, November 5, 2022


 Perhaps referring to Agenda Item 4.1  MECP 2020 Fish & Sediment Study Report as a garbage piece of self-serving trash dedicated to supporting the absolute worst in junk science and psuedo science and being used for the purpose of  reducing both moral culpability and financial liability by a provincial government Ministry, is a little on the harsh side. It is also strong evidence of MECP corruption in my well informed opinion. Therefore recognizing the harshness of my first sentence let me amend it slightly: This report by the Ontario Ministry of Expanded Corporate Pollution (MECP) is a piece of self-serving trash dedicated to supporting the absolute worst in junk science and psuedo science and being used for the purpose of reducing both moral culpability and financial liability by a provincial government Ministry. Notice I dropped the word "garbage" in that last sentence. 

The other items on the Agenda are a brief mention of my September 29/22 Delegation to RAC (Item 3.1.1.) in which I read my personal critique of this same report as well as written and verbal comments by TAG member Sebastian Seibel-Achenbach (Agenda Item 4.1.1) on this MECP report and finally brief comments on the Lanxess Monthly Pretend Progress Reports i.e. the PP Reports. If presented as usual by Linda Dickson of TAG I expect that she will point out the still ongoing failure to achieve Target Pumping Rates for wells PW4 & 5 (municipal Aquifer pumping wells). This is a huge deal but likely will not receive the attention it so badly deserves.

This TAG meeting is important and should be attended by more of the public and media. E-mail to  will get you into this virtual meeting.

Friday, November 4, 2022


 Well I've heard two figures not very far apart regarding wages. the numbers are $39,000 and $40,000 per year average wages. This is for full time work by Custodians, Librarians, Early Childhood Educators and Administrative Assistants. Those wages twenty plus years ago might have been average wages for non-union work, which is by far the majority in Canada. Regardless $39,000-40,000 would have gone a lot farther then than now.

However these are unionized wages in 2022-23 by an employer more than willing to pay teachers in excess of $100,000 per year. Sorry folks that while I respect for example public school teachers working hard all day with young children I believe that they are overpaid relative to their job. Clearly these employees on today's walkout are absolutely necessary to the proper functioning of our schools as the schools are now shut down for the day. Nobody is trying to run schools without custodians and their colleagues or do their jobs for them.

In these inflationary times and with homes still at ridiculous prices do we expect people to work for peanuts? Apparently so as all they wanted was a $4,800 wage increase to add to their $39-$40,000. figure. Also there is the not insignificant issue of negotiated contracts via good faith bargaining. Shame on Ford and the Conservatives in both cheaping out and in using the Not Withstanding Clause to do some significant union bashing in Ontario. Political Ideology sometimes stinks and this is one of those occasions.    

Thursday, November 3, 2022


 Well, well, well it seems like our long broken educational system continues to deceive. A report in today's Waterloo Region Record titled "It's the tip of the iceberg" advises us that across Canada "...252 current or former school personnel committed or were accused of committing offenses of a sexual nature against at least 548 children from 2017 to 2021." Furthermore "There is a complete lack of transparency." and "...she suspects the report's numbers are an underestimation. "It's the tip of the iceberg," she said."  Yeah our school administrators and board certainly have the problem well in hand apparently.

By that I mean they have it well covered up. All the puffery, all the bullsh.t , all the brazen lying by our educational establishment along the lines of "Zero tolerance of bullying, abuse " etc. is just that i.e. bullsh.t. Or maybe in the alternative they are pretending that students can no longer get away with those behaviours but hey adult boys will be boys so it's O.K. for them to have their fun at the kids expense. What a mess we have allowed our filth at the top of the educational system to get away with for decades. 

Just a reminder it is local as well. The behaviour of teacher Ron Archer should have resulted in criminal charges and convictions of many senior Waterloo Region District School Board (WRDSB) employees but it never did. I found out personally years afterwards that their attitude towards other lesser teacher offenders was swayed by the gross criminal behaviour of Ron Archer which finally resulted in his jail term for sexual assaults against children. I guess when they were "dealing" with Mr. Archer via the "pass the trash" policies of transferring him to other schools they kind of felt that other very bad teacher/employee behaviours could and should be stifled and covered up. By the way there have been other criminal charges laid since against WRDSB employees for sexual offenses.

So certain politicians who have made a political career starting as school Trustees might want to consider removing that from their resumes. Lets see I'm thinking ...oops there are so many both municipal and provincial it wouldn't be fair to name only some of them.  Funny how seldom any of this gets out. Maybe the shame and guilt can be shared with our police and courts as well. How often have they declared as "unfounded" sexual assault allegations in our community? How many of them have come from within our public tax funded schools? Shame on all the filth at the WRDSB and all guilty Boards who have ever looked the other way and covered up illegal behaviour by their employees towards children.  

Wednesday, November 2, 2022


 Well the September 2022 Lanxess Progress Report is out and it needs to be renamed the Lanxess Pretend Progress Report otherwise known as the PP Report. I find that moniker to be both amusing and more accurate.

The problem is the ongoing and apparently permanent failure to maintain on site hydraulic containment in the grossly contaminated municipal aquifers (MU & ML). Recall the text that is part of these monthly PP reports namely "As wells and treatment system components require periodic downtime for maintenance, the Target Average pumping rate is set at 90% of the set point rate. GHD recommends that Lanxess maintain the target pumping rates greater than or equal to these rates." That is pretty clear to all except professional liars and the intentionally obtuse.  

September's on-site Municipal Aquifer pumping rate was 4.3 litres per second. The Target Rate is 4.7 litres per second and has been that same Target Rate for years despite off-site pumping increasing over the last year. There is a relationship between on and off site pumping in that greater off-site pumping requires greater on-site pumping to maintain on-site hydraulic containment. Eleven of the last twelve months have had significantly higher off-site pumping than we have had since off-site pumping started in 1998. There not only has been no increase to on-site pumping, it has actually decreased. Not once this year (2022) has on-site pumping achieved their Target Rate of 4.7 l/sec. In fact the only time recently that on-site pumping achieved  4.7 litres per second was September 2021, a full year ago. This is a recipe for disaster and as Lanxess only pay for 50% of off-site pumping and treating and pay 100% for on-site, then the company have a financial advantage to continue to allow escape of on-site contamination to the off-site natural environment. That is immoral and illegal and your Ontario Ministry of Environment is doing nothing about it.   

Tuesday, November 1, 2022


 Last week I sent an e-mail to the five new Woolwich councillors regarding Lanxess Canada and the purported Elmira cleanup. To date one has responded. Congrats to the one and disappointment with the other four. That said I understand if they are a tad busier than usual preparing for their new (part time?) positions. 

I also sent out two Letters To The Editor and will be pleasantly surprised if even one of them gets published. These letters are well written and are in regards to a current hot potato what with even TAG members expressing discontent with Lanxess's joke of a Risk Assessment and their claims that all downstream environmental and health risks are acceptable. My Letter To The Editor is similar to yesterday's post here in the Advocate.

Oddly there doesn't seem to be any media regarding the Ontario Land Tribunal's above average stupid decision surrounding the Hawk Ridge Homes matter.  Mitigation is the word that developers and other polluters just love. Essentially it means that no matter how bad environmentally a proposed project is it can be "mitigated" through engineering controls or if they are not satisfactory through pixie dust and or fairy godmothers with magic wands.

A new subdivision of residential homes (Hawk Ridge) will be built across Union ST. from Lanxess Canada and from CCC (Former Sulco). I give credit to Sulco and their manager Ron Koniuch who fought valiantly for years opposing the hazardous location of this subdivision. He and Sulco did this both for their private interest but also importantly for the public interest. Oddly Chemtura/Lanxess dropped out of the fight several years back despite them being the most likely to cause death and mayhem from fugitive emissions and or fires.

I also believe that the proposed truck parking lot beside Bolender Park and located above the former landfill will proceed. Many people including Dr. Dan Holt have worked hard looking for alternative locations but to date to no avail. 

The Risk Assessment of the Canagagigue Creek has been a flop and a bust for the Creek, local wildlife and local residents. It has however achieved its' purpose which was to give credibility to a wholly despicable and dishonest minimized cleanup of the Creek by Lanxess while hiding yet again behind the skirts of our emasculated, impotent Ontario Ministry of Environment better known as the Ministry of Enhanced Corporate Pollution (MECP).