Tuesday, July 3, 2007

Little Hocking Seeks Cleanup

The Little Hocking Water Association says the C8 in their well field presents an imminent and substantial endangerment to health and the environment. So, they are asking DuPont to clean up the manufacturing substance that has contaminated their aquifer.

The small, rural water association has sent a Resource Conservation and Recovery Act notice to DuPont asking for the clean up of the well field, identification of alternate water sources, and extensive testing of the filtration plant currently under construction.

Attorney David Altman said the continued violation of the endangerment standard would constitute a violation of federal law if it were allowed to go on.

“We want to be sure that they understand the gravity of the situation," Altman said. "There's been a lot of new information developing like New Jersey's temporary standard, which is far below US EPA's negotiated standard. We just want the best for our members and to make sure that people who already have high levels, which sadly are the people of Little Hocking, are protected from additional C8.”

Altman said the construction of a filtration plant to remove the C8 from water is only an interim measure.

“Facets of the operation of this filtration plant, which is as my client has made very clear is a test or an experimental plant that we hope will work. We want to be sure it does work. But, we want to make sure it operates long enough, operates properly and is tested properly,” Altman said.

Without more conclusive information on the potential health impacts from exposure, Altman said any level of exposure is too much.

“When you already have high levels, we're not interested in the people of Little Hocking becoming guinea pigs to prove just how much will start to show various problems,” Altman said.

That's why Little Hocking is seeking a more permanent solution than the treatment facility current under construction.

“It doesn't really address the underlying issues, which RCRA is aimed at, which is either permanent alternate water or a clean up of the aquifer and the well fields themselves,” Altman said.

The notice advised DuPont that Little Hocking is committed to resolving these issues by the end of August.

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