Lone Tree Council and TRW
Dioxin  Update
October 16th  2006 #76
EPA documents, FOIA and access to information
Lone Tree Council historically has relied on the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) to obtain documents from various units of government and  regulatory agencies. Over the year we have filed dozens of FOIA requests. In August and September we received documents from Region V EPA  with regard to Dow Chemical's contamination of our watershed community. This was in response to a FOIA filed in July.  There are numerous documents and e-mails and  we are in the process of putting them in some semblance of order and sequence so they make sense. It may take a while but as we pull information together we will put the documents out to the public, media and put them up on the TRW web site.
About Dow's use of the Dredge Site
A few weeks ago Lone Tree Council released EPA documents obtained under the FOIA that showed Dow Chemical's interest in use of the dredge site in Zilwaukee Twp.............. this site as you know is owned by Saginaw County taxpayers.   
In a recent Saginaw New's article ( link below) Commissioner Ken Horn complained that  Lone Tree Council was  getting information ahead of commissioners and legislators. That's not our problem. If any person, commissioner, reporter or legislator wants to know what's going on file a FOIA, pick up the phone or send an e-mail to the appropriate agency. For the most part they are receptive.  I suspect Commissioner Horn knows that. I would submit what he's really upset about is like many others he didn't know about Dow's negotiations for use of the dredge site until Lone Tree released the documents. Did he have a right to be upset? Yes. But his frustration  is misplaced. Commissioner Horn  should ask Mr. Koski, the Saginaw County Public Works Commissioner, why he didn't inform the commissioners  of Dow's interest in the site.  Maybe Commissioner Horn could file a FOIA and see how many meetings Mr. Koski has attended with Dow, their attorneys and lobbyists............starting with a December 14th meeting in Lansing.
Perhaps Commissioner Horn was upset because the first time he heard about Dow's investment in this site was when Lone Tree Council released the documents and Dow admitted it gave money toward the project.  Mr. Koski knew about Dow's interest,,,,,,,,,why didn't Commissioner Horn? Not enough sunlight I suspect.
 Lone Tree Council, like any other citizen or group, maintains the right to assert our interests,  gather information and participate from an informed position. It is unfortunate that Commissioner Horn would take issue with the public's right to know or their access to information. This is a public project and Commissioner Horn is asking the taxpayers to take liability for this site.
We do disagree with the choice of this site for contaminated navigational dredgings but we have never doubted the intentions of the Board of Commissioners that this site be used only for navigational spoils. We still believe this to be the intent of the board.


What you didn't learn from the media about the slurry pit

Most of the time news articles surrounding the slurry pit are framed as if it is only Lone Tree Council objecting to this site. It makes for good tit-for tat reporting but it is not the whole truth. You have two communities, Frankenlust and Zilwaukee who vehemently oppose this project being foisted on them. Citizens from these communities along with their local elected officials oppose this site and each has done legal battle with Saginaw County over this site and will continue to do so.

Why the objection:


This is just a sample of the problems with this site but the list is pretty compelling. Yet we the taxpayers of Saginaw County are taking on the liability for this site. Without a threshold you can bet Dow will be asking for the same consideration when they want to dispose of their contaminated river dredgings should anyone ever hold Dow to the law. The precedent set by this project is a bad one for our watershed and the Great Lakes.

As past Chair of the Saginaw County Solid Waste Planning Committee I can tell you with certainty that this site is not designed to the specifications of a household waste landfill (Type II)


 UM Dioxin Exposure Study

David Linhardt, a Chemical Engineer formerly employed by Dow,  has a new web site devoted entirely  to the University of Michigan Dioxin Exposure Study. A comprehensive analysis of the U/M study, including information not discussed in the U/M report, can be found on a new web site 
www.MI-Dioxins.com  The web site will only carry information related to the U/M dioxin blood serum report.
Petitioned Health Consultation Saginaw River
Things are moving on the ATSDR Health Consultation along the Saginaw River. A meeting between DEQ, USFWS and MDCH to discuss soil and fish contaminant data has taken place so we are told.  First steps include writing a first version of the Saginaw River Fish Consumption Health Consultation, basically laying out the data and the problem. Agencies seem hopeful that additional fish sampling will occur in the spring.
The Long Shadow
Anyone who has a copy of Long Shadow please let me know. We have had several requests for copies by colleges, universities and others. Would like to get them back and replenish our library.
Next DEQ Dow Community Meeting
The Department of Environmental Quality and The Dow Chemical Company
will host the next Tri-Cities Dioxin Community Meeting at 6:30 p.m. on
Wednesday, November 8, 2006, at the Horizons Conference Center, 6200
State Street, Saginaw   The DEQ, Dow, and Dow contractor staff will be available a half hour before and after the meeting for questions and discussion.

A press release and agenda will be available prior to the November 8
Please share this notice with others who might be interested in
attending this meeting or forward their e-mail addresses to  Cheryl Howe, MDEQ  for inclusion on the distribution list. 
As always please forward this e-mail and share the information. 
Best Regards,
Michelle Hurd Riddick
Lone Tree Council

Source: Lone Tree / TRW

For additional articles like this one, go to the Tittabawassee River Watch web site www.trwnews.net. for complete coverage of the Tittabawassee River Dow Chemical dioxin contamination saga.. The source organization's web site link is listed above. The Newspaper / Media page of our site contains an extensive archive of media articles dating back to January 2002. The Newspaper / Media page may be accessed by scrolling down to the bottom of the CONTENTS section and clicking on the Newspaper/Media link.