hort.net Seasonal photo, (c) 2006 Christopher P. Lindsey, All Rights Reserved: do not copy
articles | gallery of plants | blog | tech blog | plant profiles | patents | mailing lists | top stories | links | shorturl service | tom clothier's archive0
Gallery of Plants
Tech Blog
Plant Profiles
Mailing Lists
    Search ALL lists
    Search help
    Subscription info
Top Stories
sHORTurl service
Tom Clothier's Archive
 Top Stories
Disease could hit Britain's trees hard

Ten of the best snowdrop cultivars

Plant protein database helps identify plant gene functions

Dendroclimatologists record history through trees

Potato beetle could be thwarted through gene manipulation

Hawaii expands coffee farm quarantine

Study explains flower petal loss

Unauthorized use of a plant doesn't invalidate it's patent

RSS story archive

Fwd: Part 6 -- It all began in New York

  • Subject: [cg] Fwd: Part 6 -- It all began in New York
  • From: TheBynums@aol.com
  • Date: Mon, 21 May 2001 05:27:56 EDT

Some organizations and individuals have ask to be removed from the mailing 
list based on the mistaken belief that the information doesn't apply to their 
needs. Well, if you breathe air, eat food, or drink water and want to be a 
part of the political system for change to protective the health of your 
children and grandchildren this information apply to your needs. 
Thank you

  • Subject: Part 6 -- It all began in New York
  • From: TheBynums@aol.com
  • Date: Fri, 18 May 2001 06:18:46 EDT
  • Full-name: TheBynums
  When EPA rewrote the 1989 proposed 503 sludge regulation, its major intent 
was not to protect our health and prevent any harm to the environment but to 
benefit the
municipal sewage treatment plants faced with the problem of disposal of 
millions of tons of sludge.  Its all a big fixed crap game, municipalities 
and state regulators, have been bribed into helping EPA promote sludge as a 
beneficial fertilizer product, not with personal gain, but with state and 
municipal funding, relaxed or no enforcement of federal laws and no apparent 
liability for the disposal of sewage sludge.

     In EPA's push to promote sludge use as a fertilizer, the Agency has made 
beneficial use more cost effective for municipalities than surface or 
landfill disposal. This encouraged POTWs (Public Owned Treatment Works) to 
shift from
other disposal methods to beneficial land application.  Basically, what this 
amounted to was a name change and deregulation.  As an example, one of the 
expenses POTWs who used sludge beneficially would not have was groundwater

     In 1991, Part 258 municipal landfill regulation identified eight metals 
to be analyzed by the POTWs during the first phase of ground water 
monitoring: Arsenic, barium, cadmium, chromium, lead, mercury, selenium, and 
silver. --  copper, nickel and zinc were added as well as antimony, 
beryllium, cobalt, thallium, and vanadium ---because the Agency believes that 
the metals pose serious threats to human
health and the environment.  Yet, no ground water monitoring is required for 
beneficial use. According to the EPA: 
     Because of the expense of installing ground-water
     monitoring wells, the Agency determined that most POTWs
     reporting in the NSSS [National Sewage Sludge Survey]
     incorporated sewage sludge into the land for disposal
     [called dedicated land application in the NSSS] would
     shift to land application rather than continue to use
     the land strictly for disposal. (58 FR p. 9374)

     For all practical purposes there is no difference between a beneficial 
land application site and a surface disposal site. In reality, more 
pollutants can be disposed of on a beneficial sludge farm use site than can 
be placed on a surface disposal site. EPA has deliberately chosen farm land 
as a cheap dump site because of the Statutory exclusion for polluted run-off 
from these sites. These gentlemen figured the federal and state politicians, 
farmers, and consumers were too dumb to every catch the deception. Therefore, 
it is clear, the only purpose of beneficial sludge use is that it is a cheap 
unregulated method of disposal.  As an example, according to EPA's cost 
benefit plan: 
     Most of the management practices (for surface disposal
     under part 503) are very similar to those in Part 257
     and are expected to result in negligible cost.  However,
     unlined surface disposal units (which all are assumed to
     be) are unlikely to be certified that they will not
     contaminate the ground water. Thus EPA assumes ground-
     water monitoring must be performed. The total cost to
     plan the monitoring program, install the monitoring
     wells, and sample and test ground water is expected to
     total 1.5 million per year. (58 FR p. 9375)

     What all the double speak says is that EPA is fully aware that unlined 
dedicated surface sludge disposal sites do cause ground water contamination.  
However, changing the name from a dedicated surface disposal site to a 
beneficial sludge
use site would eliminate the requirement for ground water monitoring. This 
does not prevent ground water contamination from unlined beneficial use 
sites, it only prevents the discovery of the ground water contamination until 
people start having health problems and animals start getting sick and/or 
both dying. 

     Under the final Part 503 concept, EPA spelled out how the choice was to 
be determined whether to place the sludge in a dedicated surface disposal 
site or beneficially use it as a fertilizer.  According to EPA:
     When the sewage sludge is not used to condition the soil
     or to fertilize crops or vegetation grown on the land,
     the sewage sludge is not being land applied. It is being
     disposed of on the land. In that case, the requirements
     in the subpart on surface disposal in the final Part 503
     regulation must be met.

     Beneficial use is being made more attractive to the treatment plants as 
a fertilizer food crops rather than surface disposal because there are no 
controls, little paperwork, and no permit requirements.  Nor is there any 
requirement to prevent pollutants in surface water run-off from contaminating 
adjacent land or water or air as there is with a surface disposal site.

     Once the proposed Part 503 regulation was released, it had to go out for 
public comments and be peer reviewed. One has only to look at the composition 
of the Peer Review Committee and who paid for it to see how biased it was in
favor of beneficial use. According to the Federal Register, the Peer Review 
Committee consisted of the following people and their organizations, EPA, 
USDA, Land Grant Colleges, municipal treatment plants, and industry. The 
Association of
Metropolitan Sewerage Agencies (AMSA) and the Water Environment Federation 
(WEF) contributed to travel expenses (58 FR 9267). The AMSA and the WEF 
membership are composed of wastewater treatment plant management, engineering 
companies, equipment suppliers, waste management industry, etc.

     Representing EPA on the Peer Review Committee were:  Dr. John Walker, a 
physical scientist, who has built his career around promoting the use of 
sewage sludge as a fertilizer, first with USDA, and then as an EPA employee.
Walker's expertise on the committee included processes,  management practices 
and metal bioavailability.  Walker was also aware by 1973 that the lime 
treatment process did not destroy pathogenic organisms. He recently authored 
a study which confirmed that "odor" (volatile compounds) will cause public 
health problems to neighbors of the sites.

     Also representing EPA were: Dr. Robert Bastian, a biologist, according 
to 1998 documents, also served on the Part 503 Peer Review Committee. 
Bastian's expertise on the committee was listed as; sludge processing, 
management practices and regulatory impacts.  Dr. James Ryan and Dr. Joseph 
Farrell, were also on the Part 503 Peer Review Committee. Ryan's expertise 
was metal bioavailability and organic bioavailability. Ryan was 1 of 5 people 
on the committee listed with organic bioavailability expertise. Farrell was 
the only person listed with any expertise on pathogens.

     USDA was represented on the Committee by:  Dr. Rufus Chaney, who also 
built a career on doing studies promoting the use of sludge as a fertilizer.  
His expertise
on the committee was bioavailability of metals. Dr. Robert Dowdy was also 
listed as an expert on metal bioavailability. 

     Members on the Committee from Land Grant Colleges included:  Dr. Terry 
Logan of the Ohio State University (OSU), who co-chaired the Peer Review 
Committee.  Logan's expertise on the committee was bioavailability of metals. 
 He has been
involved with beneficial sludge use through research at the University of 
Ohio and employment with commercial sludge disposal firms. In September 1998, 
Logan became the President of N-Viro International, a major sludge processor.

     Dr. Al Page of the University of California at Riverside  (UCR), who was 
co-chair of the Peer Review Committee with Dr. Logan, was listed as a metal 
bioavailability expert, as was Dr. Andrew Chang, Page's colleague at UCR.  
Dr. Page was also
the Chair of the National Science Academy's National Research Council 
Committee (NRC) which reviewed the final regulation's risk assessment 
methodology from 1993 to its conclusive 1996 report, "Use of Reclaimed Water 
and Sludge in Food Crop Production". Dr. Chang was also on the NCR Committee 
which was supervised by EPA's Bob Bastian.

     It would outwardly appear that the only area of real concern with sludge 
use was in the bioavailability of metals. But where were the veterinarians, 
the microbiologists, the public health service and the medical doctors?  
Where were the experts who knew the disease organisms would not be killed by 
the treatment processes and how they are spread? Could it really be that only 
Walker, Chaney, Bastian and Rubin knew the truth?

     There was a definite conflict of interest in the make up  of the Peer 
Review Committee. This is an example of what Dr. Stan Tackett called one 
sided science.  According to Dr. Tackett, the beneficial use scientists are 
well represented
on scientific committees.  He says, "It is no wonder then  that the 
scientists selected by the EPA to serve on sludge advisory committees are the 
"beneficial use" researchers, and the only research reports they deem 
acceptable for the
purpose of adopting new sludge spreading regulations are from  the 
"beneficial use" studies.

     Some of the Peer Review members research has been funded by the EPA for 
a very long time. Many were involved in the 1972 NC-118 project, "Utilization 
and Disposal of Municipal, Industrial and Agricultural Processing Waste on 
Land" and the
W-124 project, "Soil as a Waste Treatment System--a five year study involving 
the Land Grant Universities, USDA and EPA"; "Optimum Utilization of Sewage 
Sludge on Land", a 5 year project involved 44 researchers from 15 Land Grant  
Universities, 3 USDA laboratories, 1 EPA laboratory, 2 municipal wastewater 
treatment agencies and TVA. (This project was extended for two years).  In 
1984, the W-124
committee transformed itself into the W-170 committee for another 5 year 
project, "Chemistry and Bioavailability of Waste Constituents in Soils". This 
was a slightly smaller group composed of 25 researchers from 13 Land Grant  
Universities, 2 USDA laboratories, 1 municipal wastewater treatment agency, 1 
EPA laboratory and TVA.
Yet, EPA admitted to the federal courts in 1994, that it had no credible 
research on the pollutant, Chromium!

     Some members of the W-170 and predecessor Committees  organized and 
conducted with EPA, in 1973 the "Joint Conference on Recycling of Municipal 
Sludges and Effluent on Land". In 1975, 76, and 77, they published papers 
with standardization and methodology of using sludge and wastewaters on land. 
In 1979, they reviewed the part 257 solid waste sludge disposal regulation. 
In 1983, the W-170 committee sponsored a workshop on "Utilization of 
Municipal Wastewater and Sludge on Land" with EPA, USDA, the University of 
California Kearney Foundation of Soil Science, the U.S. Army Corps of 
Engineers, and the National Science Foundation. Two years later in 1985, the 
W-170 committee organized and  conducted a workshop on "Land Application of 
Municipal Sewage Sludge". The Workshop assessed the validity of the 
assumptions made in the risk assessment process on fate of sludge 
contaminates.  Findings of the workshop are contained in a book entitled Land 
Application of Municipal Sewage Sludge edited by (three members of the Peer 
Review Committee) A.L. Page, T.J. Logan, and J.A. Ryan.  [32]

     Some members of the W-124 committee were also on the 1987 EPA Science 
Advisory Board which reviewed the Technical Documents supporting the 
revisions of Part 257 on the use and disposal of sewage sludge.  Yet, EPA's 
Science Advisory Board did not review the final Part 503 regulations for land 
use. There was a good reason for this oversight.  No credible scientist or 
scientific organization would put their reputation on the line once they read 
the definition of a pollutant (chemicals and disease organisms) within the 
regulation and the law, which state that the EPA Administrator has data on 
file which show that exposure to any of the pollutants in sludge through 
inhalation (air), ingestion (water, food, soil) or direct contact will cause 
death, disease, cancer, genetic mutations, etc.

     The only way the Committee could help EPA change the regulation was to 
attack the methodology behind the regulation. Although the Technical Support 
Documents (TSDs) had been reviewed and approved by the Science Advisory Board 
in 1987, which was composed of some of the same members as the Peer Review 
Committee, the Committee criticized the regulations as containing:
     Such extensive misinterpretation and errors in the TSDs
     that it is imperative that EPA review and revise them
     completely. We also recommend that review and revision
     of the rule and the TSDs be conducted in consultation
     with the PRC (Peer Review Committee) and other
     knowledgeable experts.

     What was worse, in their view, was that beneficial use (more research 
       would be effectively prohibited under the new rule, because: 
      The proposed rule is based on a series of worst case
      scenarios, which are so stringent and inflexible that 
      local communities are precluded from beneficial use 
     options considered protective of the public health and 
      the environment under local conditions.  Beneficial 
      use is constrained because the proposed rule provides no   
     allowances for local conditions within and among
     communities.  The PRC is concerned that, in spite of the
     Agency's own findings that the aggregate risk for the
     land-based sludge utilization options are lower than
     that associated with other disposal options, the
     proposed regulations encourage non-utilization

     The PRC mentioned an interesting concept of the sludge use risk 
assessment. Somehow, someway, by some magic, it was less dangerous to dispose 
of toxic pollutant contaminated sludge on your food crop production land and 
lawn, than it
was to disposed of the sludge in a highly regulated legally permitted 

     One of the key areas of Part 503 that was criticized by the Peer Review 
Committee was the risk assessment method which allowed for worst case 
scenarios.  The worse case scenarios are the same precautionary principals 
that European
countries and Canada did use to protect their people from adverse health 
effects of toxicity and the environment from further degradation from 
exposure to pollutants in sludge. When all ocean dumping was banned and the 
part 503 regulation was released in 1993, EPA/WEF hired a public relations 
firm to create a public relations program to spread its beneficial use 
concept worldwide.
     The first step in their effort to gut the 1989 proposed  regulation of 
any warning concerning the acknowledged carcinogens and pathogenic agents in 
sludge was for the Peer Review Committee to attack the lack of science behind 
the regulation. They wrote:
     It is evident from a review of the document that many of
     the conclusions reached by EPA are not driven by
     science, but rather by policy decisions.  In view of the
     inherent uncertainties in risk assessment and the
     necessity for value judgments, the prominence of the
     policy decisions is understandable. However, instead of
     acknowledging these policy decisions and justifying them
     on legal, political and social grounds, EPA has in many
     cases, tried to make it appear that the basis for these
     decisions was scientific.  This problem permeates the
     proposed rule and technical support documents.---we wish
     to emphasize that EPA has disguised policy decisions
     with the risk assessment assumptions and database,
     apparently to make it appear that the results were
     derived scientifically. Had they wished to do the effort
     correctly they should have, at the very least, clearly
     presented the underlying assumptions, data and models.
     Instead, these are scattered through numerous documents
     in a manner that is very difficult to assess.

     EPA's John Walker has since written that EPA did not "consider" any of 
the pollutants addressed in the finally regulation to be carcinogenic for any 
of the pathways evaluated in it's scientific risk assessment. You would not 
know that by reading the Committee report.
     Although the Committee found fault with most of the risk assessment, it 
accepted the EPA's less conservative 1 in 10,000, instead of 1 in a 
1,000,000, risk assessment for cancer because "the 1 in 10,000 risk level 
reduces the regulatory impact of the rule allowing the Agency to regulate the 
use and disposal of sewage sludge without needlessly burdening the regulated 
community or negatively impacting
beneficial reuse." (58 FR p. 9281)

     Of course, the purpose of the regulation was to get rid of the sludge 
problem, not regulate it. Basically, many sludge disposal sites would have 
already exceeded the
proposed regulated limits.  Under EPA's 1984 policy, states such as Missouri 
had been disposing of toxic heavy metals and deadly organic chemicals at 
extremely high levels compared to what they would have been allowed to do 
under the 1989 EPA
proposed Part 503. 

     The way the product (sludge fertilizer) has been packaged and promoted 
the consumer's right to be heard and make a value judgment will never happen. 
They will never associate any acute adverse health effects, i.e., a child 
playing in the yard where sludge was spread as a fertilizer, who becomes ill 
or dies from exposure to volatile compounds, worms, E. coli or Salmonella or 
other deadly diseases that has regrown in the product, with the product 
itself.  Subchronic and chronic effects from exposure to toxic heavy metals 
and deadly organic chemicals, such as cancer, immune and reproductive system 
damage, which would take years to show up, would never be connected with the 

      Furthermore, "food slander" laws enacted by 13 states would restrict 
the consumers right to sue for damages from the use of a sludge product. 
According to a January 17, 1998 editorial in the Kansas City Star, Missouri 
Rep. Sam  Leake, a Laddonia farmer who chairs the Agriculture Committee in 
the Missouri House, wants to protect Missouri farmers by enacting a "law to 
impose tough penalties on people who "disseminate a false and defamatory 
statement" about farmers or their products. "Leake's bill would establish a 
penalty of three times actual damages for anyone [without scientific proof] 
who "knowingly" makes or disseminates a false and
disparaging statement about agricultural products or an ag producer." 

In effect, without owning a contaminated farm with certified test reports and 
a library of sludge studies, anyone making any statement contrary to EPA/WEF's
scientific consensus would be subject to a lawsuit which would bankrupt them 
at the very least.

     These laws are needed because of the EPA and Peer Review Committee's 
work. Exactly who was the Peer Review Committee working for when it made the 
recommendations to: 
    * Exempt from the rule banned compounds that have been
     shown to pose insignificant risk (such as lindane,
     chlordane, PCBs, hexachlorobutadiene).  This action
     would be consistent with the screening approach used by
     EPA (i.e., Environmental Profile and Hazard Indices) to
     eliminate low priority pollutants from consideration.
   * Exclude from the rule the chemicals which the Agency
     assumes to be lost from the sludge during processing and
     are not present in sludge in significant amounts.

     The Peer Review Committee, composed primarily of scientists who claimed 
to be experts on metals, recommended EPA exempt the toxic organic chemicals 
to make it easier for the POTWs to accept the beneficial land disposal 
methods.  If  the organic chemicals that were listed in the proposed Part 503 
were regulated, it would require the POTWs to do costly tests. The dioxin 
test alone would cost between $900 to $1200 a test.  Compare this with 
co-disposal (2,991 POTWs) of
sludge and solid waste under Parts 257/258, where no organic  chemical tests 
are required, but ground water monitoring is required as well as a risk 
assessment of 1 in 100,000 for over 200 chemicals. Interestingly enough, just 
this week, the National Science Academy has agreed to release it's dioxin 
study which shows dioxin is a cancer causing agent.

     The Peer Review Committee could not let the proposed regulation stand as 
written.  It was too conservative and would have effectively curtailed much 
of the land application of sludge. Furthermore, EPA had too much money 
invested in
beneficial use research and development, too many people had built their 
careers on beneficial use of sludge research and too much sludge had already 
been used for crop production as well as on home lawns and gardens. This 
could create a huge
liability problem if the practice was discontinued or if the public every 
discovered the deception.

     Not only are we being duped by selected biased scientists who assure us 
that land application of sewage sludge is safe, but also by EPA/WEF's 
so-called "water
quality professionals". Research by the EPA/WEF research firm, Powell Tate, 
revealed that "water quality professionals" are considered as trusted 

      They say since the research did not probe further as to whom 
respondents considered "water quality professionals," we can promote our 
spokespeople as the "water quality professionals to be trusted." (pp. 9-10) 
Their advice was that WEF members, therefore, should be encouraged to reach 
out to the public as
"water quality professionals" (rather than "waste treatment specialist" or a 
similar title). They say "given the vagueness of this term {water quality 
professional), we see
no reason why WEF members should not fully adopt this term in referring to 
themselves and in all materials produced for the campaign..." They add 
further, "we suggest that the WEF (spokesperson) be introduced as a water 
quality professional
with XYZ company." (p. 33)

     They also recommended "that WEF, through its members, recruit at least 6 
regional spokespeople to be trained in media and presentation skills and 
aggressively marketed by WEF with the media in their respective regions as a 
quality professional" knowledgeable in the field of biosolids  recycling." 
They suggest that "once trained, these individuals can be scheduled for 
editorial board visits,
media interviews, meetings with community leaders and appearances at public 
forums in their regions." They say "An ongoing outreach campaign to the media 
using these individuals is essential in communicating messages to gatekeeper 
audiences and, through them, the general public". (pp. 33-34) These 
spokespersons can be used for "medical interviews, to byline articles for 
placement in newspapers
and journals, to visit and brief editorial boards, to appear at conferences 
and on panel discussions, and to testify, as appropriate, at regulatory and 
legislative hearings." (p. 31) Upon recommendations by Powell Tate, 
spokespersons are to be trained specifically on "how to deal with the media, 
to communicate certain messages, to handle different types of media 
interviews and to make presentations." They suggest
that, "Should funding allow, consideration might also be given to recruiting 
one national spokesperson who can represent the broader, national interest on 
this issue."

     By changing the name from sewage sludge to biosolids and  by claiming 
that biosolids recycling is good for the environment, the EPA/WEF public 
relations campaign has been able to enlist the support of certain 
environmental groups whose members spout  the EPA/WEF propaganda. According 
to Stauber and Rampton, Sarah Clark, formerly of the Environmental Defense 
Fund, claims that sludge "is the best means of returning to the soil 
nutrients and organic matter that were originally removed. It is recycling a 
resource just as recycling newspapers or bottles is." According to these 
authors, "Some environmental activists with Greenpeace and
the Citizens Clearinghouse on Hazardous Waste have warned about the dangers 
of sludge, but most groups have bought into the argument that sludge farming 
is the least offensive way to deal with the problem of waste disposal."

     The roles the targeted environmental groups such as the Environmental 
Defense Fund are to play in the public relations campaign was spelled out in 
the Powell Tate
Communications Plan. They suggest that "WEF request that the environmental 
partner add its name to the environmental  information sheet in the kit." 
They say this will give the information added impact and credibility." 
Environmental groups such as the Coastal Conservation Association whose focus 
is on ocean-related issues, especially, are prime targets.  Powell Tate 
believe they should be "most receptive
and may be recruited to help gain the support of other organizations." (p. 
10) They say "it is in this group's (CCA) interest to promote biosolids 
recycling if only to guarantee that biosolids are never again deposited in 
the ocean." They
add "Obtaining an endorsement from the group for biosolids recycling will 
help with other environmental groups (strength in numbers) and can be used to 
spread word about beneficial use with "green" individuals.

     Stauber and Rampton found in the research for their  book, Toxic Sludge 
Is Good For You that the EPA's PR strategy was "first outlined in a 40-page 
report published in 1981 with a classic bureaucratic title: Institutional 
Constraints and Public Acceptance Barriers to Utilization of Municipal 
Wastewater and Sludge for Land Reclamation and Biomass Production". They say 
in this report that "the ICPABUMWSLRBP warns that projects may be blocked by 
small local groups.
Citizens who 'feel their interests threatened' may 'often mount a significant 
campaign against a project.' They add "To counter this opposition, 
ICPABUMWSLRBP advises projects advocates to choose a strategy of either 
'aggressive' or  'passive' public relations." According to the ICPABUMWSLRBP 
report, Stauber and Rampton say "Aggressive public relations" uses glossy 
brochures describing the project; open public meetings, presentations to 
specific interest groups; presentation of films about similar projects; local 
media coverage; technical education campaigns for the public and in schools; 
establishment of a hotline for quick response questions and presentation of 
material stressing community benefits from the project." The Powell Tate 
public relations communication plan, for the most part, advocates an 
strategy similar to that of the ICPABUMWSLRBP. With the tremendous push for 
the total public acceptance of sewage sludge by the year 2000, many local 
groups over the country, who are attempting to ban land application of sewage 
in their communities by alerting residents of its adverse effects on humans 
and animals, are facing a highly visible aggressive public relations campaign 
as recommended by Powell Tate.

     In contrast to the aggressive campaign, the passive campaign, say 
Stauber and Rampton, makes " little effort to reach out to particular 
segments or constituents of the public. Rather, information about the project 
{is} made  available for individuals and groups which made the effort to 
obtain it."  According to these authors, "This secretive approach works best 
in small, rural communities 'where the application site is relatively 

     An example of the passive approach was given in a panel presentation at 
the Citizens Forum on Environmental and Health Concerns from Landscaping of 
Sewage and Paper Mill Sludges on November 15, 1997 in Concord, NH, by Steven
Schiller. Steve is a resident of Newbury, New Hampshire, a small town of 
about 1200 people. He related to the panel how he and other residents were 
unaware that land reclamation of a sand pit using sewage sludge was even 
occurring in their town until the dump trucks came rolling in early one 
     In November of 1995, my wife was up early. She was a
     baker at the time, so she had to be at work at 5:00 in
     the morning.  She was up before dawn at four o'clock
     a.m., and we live in a town with a road that's about as
     wide as that table. And she heard a strange rumbling
     sound and she thought we were going to get a storm. And
     the sound got louder and louder down 103 and then it
     turned onto our little road, and she had lost count of
     the number of large 22-wheel dump trucks that came
     rumbling down our street with their lights off at four
     o'clock in the morning. And they turned across the
     street from our house down a dirt road into a sand pit.
     So my wife came in at four in the morning and she woke
     me up, which I don't like at all. And she said,
     "Something's going on in the pit across the street." And
     I said, "yeah, uh huh.

     And I didn't give it much thought, until about a month
     later when I got up to go to work and the sky above my
     town was blue-black and the smell was so overwhelming
     that my daughter was ill, my neighbors were ill...
     And then I came to find out that the guys that work at
     the state road department, also across the street from
     my house, had all taken sick that day. And the people
     started calling our selectmen to find out what was
     burning in the pit. "Oh, nothing's burning in the pit."
     "Well, what's going on in the pit?" "Well, there's some
     land reclamation going on in the pit." "Oh, what's land
     reclamation all about?" Well, that's when we found out
     about the federal regulation to reclaim land that's been
     strip mined...

     ...so we called BFI; they came around and reassured
     everybody in the community. Of course, they hadn't told
     us they were going to do this, and if my wife hadn't
     been up at four o'clock in the morning, we wouldn't have
     known it was done.

    Steve voices how he and other residents felt about the  secrecy 
surrounding the sludge reclamation project by the complaint they directed to 
    "No we don't like it because we don't know what's in it,
    and you're not telling us what's in it, and our selectmen
    don't know what's in it, and you didn't tell them what's
    in it, and you're telling me, oh, it's an acceptable
    level of risk.  Who's taking the risk? Are you taking
    the risk, BFI?

Jim Bynum
PO Box 34475
N. Kansas City, Mo. 64116

 © 1995-2015 Mallorn Computing, Inc.All Rights Reserved.
Our Privacy Statement
Other Mailing lists | Author Index | Date Index | Subject Index | Thread Index