Dioxin Update
TRW and Lone Tree Council
June 9th, 2003

Please visit this site frequently!

Next TRW-Lone Tree Meeting is Monday, June 16th at GreenPoint Nature Center 6pm

DEQ Meeting June 24th 7pm Freeland HS from Pat Lawton DEQ
You are invited to attend a Public Meeting on the Tittabawassee/Saginaw
River Flood Plain Environmental Assessment Initiative on June 24, 2003.

Representatives of the Departments of Environmental Quality (DEQ),
Community Health (DCH), and Agriculture (MDA) will host this meeting at
7:00 p.m. in the Freeland High School Auditorium, 8250 Webster Road,

TRiver Mail List We have had the mail list for every resident in the floodplain for some time. We are working, and remain optimistic, we will secure funding to do a newsletter to educate, inform and cultivate dialogue on the contamination.

Interim Health Measures and Public Education Those egregious and misleading signs remain posted at Immerman Park, while no postings are in place at W. Michigan and Freeland Festival parks. Inhalation of dioxin is a major exposure pathway! The signs at Immerman reference "ingestion" as the only pathway and leave the public with the idea the contamination is "near the river." Wrong! MDCH and the Saginaw County Health Department continue to battle over the signs and while Caesar (government) fiddles.......
The good news is there are efforts underway to cover the barren trails with wood chips to put a barrier between the public and the contaminated soil.

DEQ Budget Passed the house with significant cuts in enforcement funding. As you can surmise, all the laws in the world aren't worth the paper their written on if you cannot enforce them. No big hits expected this year but next. Budget in the Senate at this time.

DOW LIST SERVE Several of us have been asked to join and become part of a National Dow List Serve in an effort to communicate ideas and share information with others who are dealing with Dow issues or dioxin issues in their communities.

Soil Testing Comments by Wendy Domino A
preliminary verbal report from Sue Matlock, DEQ, indicates dioxin levels on 5580 Stroebel Rd are 3, 8, 8, and 50. These are surface readings. There was one reading of 90 ppt at six inches below surface level which was found at the northernmost tip of the property (closest to the river). Sue indicated she intended to send us a letter detailing her findings. We feel relieved that our level is not in the 7000 range like it is in the GreenPoint area. However, we're still confused as to how to get on with our lives and disappointed that we're stuck with this contaminated property.

Kathy Henry on the Class Action

As of 5/30/03 142 plaintiffs have signed up with the lawsuit.

This has to be sending Dow, the state, and county a strong message. That number grows on a daily basis.

Dow responded to the lawsuit 5/16/03
As expected, Dow basically denies everything, "wherefore, Dow respectfully requests that the court dismiss all counts of the complaint."...
I have a complete copy of the response for those of you that have not seen it online. Warning, It is a VERY BIG file, 3-4 mb's total, email accounts such as hotmail will not take such large files. But if you would like to see it contact me at

One particular quote from the response worth repeating...

"Any injury, damage or loss sustained by the plaintiffs was proximately caused by and/or contributed to by their own negligence, carelessness, and/or omissions,"

The First hearing is scheduled for June 23 at the Saginaw County courthouse. 10:00 am.
Hope to see everyone there to show support for our efforts.

Chemical and Engineering News interview Betty Damore
In the June 2003 edition Chemical and Engineering News spoke with Betty and Kathy Henry about the class action. The following is an excerpt:
The extent of and responsibility for dioxins contamination has long been
debated by state and company officials and residents living downstream
from the 100-year-old plant. "The suit," resident Betty Damore says,
"seems the only way we can say to Dow that you'd better address the
problem." You can access the entire story by copying and pasting the link.


Dow License Update
It looks like Dow's operating license may be issued very soon. Today? After the permit is issued Dow will have 60 days to come up with a 'Scope of Work Plan.' Dow's proposed plan will be posted on the Internet, etc., and there will be also some DEQ public meetings. Everything that Dow proposes will be put out there for public review. The DEQ will start with the ONSITE part of the Corrective Action Order first (work previously delayed by Consent Order).

Community Advisory Panel
The concept of the CAP has been incorporated into a draft Project
Coordination Plan. " Please recognize that this document is still under
development and we continue to seek input," according to Ms. Shekter of DEQ. She further stated she believes the CAP will become a reality.

FOIA Freedom of information requests have been filed with a number of agencies, state, local and federal regarding the contamination in Midland and the T-River Floodplain. Will update as soon as I read them.

Regards to all,

Michelle Hurd Riddick
Lone Tree Council

Act as if what you do makes a difference. It does.
~ William James