New York Injury News

EPA estimates $60 million to clean up GM toxic waste in NY

The EPA is involved with angry residents claim that they want the toxic waste removed and the dumping ground cleaned up.

Akwesasne, NY ( – In Akwesasne, where St. Regis Mohawk Tribe and residencies live together, General Motors (GM) and local aluminum industrial plants leaked poisonous chemicals called polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs) into the land and water of the town, as announced by Detroit Free Press. The toxic chemical pollutant PCB has became ingrained in the terrain, and locals are noticing how it affects them and their environment.

GM’s site called Massena has been a major contributor to pollution in the Akwesasne area. This site, in particular, has been recognized by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) as a toxic dumping ground for the past 15 years. The site has become an EPA clean-up project since it is one of the 100 of GM’s locations that have closed and after GM filed for bankruptcy.

A local businessman blames his hyperthyroid condition to PCB exposure.  The man stated that a hill located on his property is really just toxic waste buried in the ground. Fish in the local bodies of water have mutated due to the chemicals.

The factory was established in 1959 when only 11,500 residents occupied the town at the time. Today the Massena site has dumped thousands of tons of PCB- a residue of hydraulic oil, and millions of gallons of toxic waste that polluted the water and soil discarded here over the past 15 years, reported the EPA.

The Environmental department administrator stated that he was astonished that GM would be permitted to shirk its duty to clean up the toxicities they left behind. Angry residents wonder if that waste will ever be removed. The EPA’s 1984 program: EPA National Priorities list as a component of the Superfund was created to clean up spills and toxic chemical waste areas, or charge the company liable for the mess to finance a clean it up or do it themselves.

The Tribe has estimated that it will take $225 million to completely remove the mountains of waste so that the land may be usable again, but the EPA responded with $60 million for clean-up including GM’s 22 million. Local Authorities stated that $60 million would only remove the factories, leaving toxic waste in the surrounding premises.

Bridget Hom

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