Lone Tree Council and TRW Dioxin Update
July 11, 2005 #47

EPA - Fox River Presentation Jim Hahnenberg, our second guest in the Dioxin in the Watershed speakers series, did a detailed job of pointing out what options are available for river cleanup depending on the geology and specifics of the river. His power point illustrated how extensive river cleanup is taking place all across the country using various technologies. Two of the most illustrative points were how quickly river habitat can be restored and the economic benefits associated with cleaning up contaminated rivers.

These benefits are recognized in the increase value of homes and property, job creation and increase recreational opportunities. During the presentation Mr. Hahnenberg was asked if an exposure investigation or a health study were required before cleanup was initiated or if either were required to set cleanup standards. The answer was no. I asked if he knew of any company forced into bankruptcy for being held responsible and he said, no.

The reason being that cleanup takes a long time and the cost is spread out over years. If you would like the Power Point ( 20 MB) A pdf version is available on trwnews.net document page, click here for
Part 1 and Part 2. I can e-mail it to you in two parts or I have copied it to CD. Just let me know. michdave@aol.com. Anticipate our next guest speaker sometime in September.

Michigan United Conservation Club (MUCC) unanimously pass resolution on the Tittabawassee River at their state wide convention

Resolution No. 28

Tittabawassee river and flood plain ecological restoration

WHEREAS, the DOW Chemical Company (DOW) and the Michigan Department of Environmental Quality (DEQ) have adopted a "Framework for an Agreement" for progress toward a "…comprehensive, final solution to the mid-Michigan dioxin/furan situation", and

WHEREAS, the Tittabawassee River and flood plain have been identifies as significant reservoirs of toxicants which is a major ecological issue, deserving of the full attention of MUCC in accordance with MUCC policy, and

WHEREAS, THE Michigan United Conservation Clubs (MUCC) recognizes the critical importance of these resources and those of the Saginaw River and Saginaw Bay, and

WHEREAS, the "Framework" contemplates the essential participation of a wide range of stakeholders in an iterative development of a final solution to these ecological concerns, shaping the final resolution of this matter, now

THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED that the long term goal of the final solution must be the restoration and subsequent protection of the public trust in the river and floodplain as a major, inseparable natural resource, and

that this public trust includes full public access to the river and to public lands in the floodplain, and

that this public trust includes restoration and protection of aquatic and upland wildlife resources and habitat at all trophic levels, and

that this public trust requires that where it is not feasible to restore the full value of the natural resources, that a full restitution of this damage be made through the establishment of a trust fund of appropriate value to be used to benefit the citizens and resources of the area, and

that this pubic trust requires the assessment of human health risk, at all stages of human life, associated with fish and game consumption, as well as all other routes of human exposure, and

BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that MUCC, including representatives of MUCC member clubs, be participants in the stakeholder process, and

BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that MUCC critique and evaluate the adequacy of the proposed final solutions developed under this process, formally submit MUCC comments to the DEQ, and advocate for their full consideration in the final settlement of this matter.

District 10 – Region IV – Dr. Fred Brown


Recent Secret Studies by Dow High concentrations persist: Dow found the highest concentrations to date in the sediments of the Tittabawassee River near Center Rd in the summer of 2003-------- 19,000 ppt. Needless to say Dow did not report this concentrations to anyone and when Dow went back to the site for additional testing in the fall of 2004 this high concentration was gone due to the flooding in March of 2004.

I recently filed a FOIA to review DEQ files and found it interesting that in a public meeting in April 2005 ( DEQ Activity Report 4-13-05) Sue Carrington from Dow lamented , " Dow is having a hard time finding the dioxin". I would argue Dow is not having a hard time finding it..........they choose to ignore it when they do find it.

Slanted negotiations :

Dow's Saginaw River sediment sampling document states that samples were taken in an area from the Saginaw river's confluence with the Tittabawassee to the 6th street turning basin. These are the exact landmarks laid out in the Dow-DEQ Framework. Would appear that part of the negotiated Framework agreement was predicated on information that only Dow had because of their secret sampling. Unethical and uncalled for.

MDEQ presentations scheduled for this week

July 12, 2005: Dr. Linda Birnbaum
Go to www.trwnews.net  for the DEQ press release announcing a public meeting being held on Tuesday, July 12 by the DEQ, Department of Community Health, and the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (U.S. EPA) in Midland where U.S. EPA dioxin expert, Dr. Linda Birnbaum, will be speaking on dioxins and their health effects.
In addition to the post-meeting availability described in the press release, agency staff will have maps and graphics on the local contamination and will be available for informal one-on-one discussion from 5:30 to 6:30 p.m. before Dr. Birnbaum's presentation. This presentation will be held at the Dow Library in Midland. This is the first of a number of Technical Information Meetings (TIMs) that will held by DEQ and Dow. Only Dow is not taking part in this one in their home town.

July 14, 2005: EPA SITE program
The U.S. EPA Superfund Innovative Technology Evaluation (SITE) Program staff will speak on "Testing of Monitoring and Measurement Technologies for Dioxin and Dioxin-like Compounds in Soil and Sediment" on Thursday, July 14 at the Saginaw Township Fire Hall Classroom, 155 N. Center Road, Saginaw, from 7:00 to 8:00 p.m. This talk will discuss the results of work sponsored by the U.S. EPA to evaluate methodologies to complement high resolution mass spectrometry (HRMS) to determine the dioxin-like toxicity of soil and sediment samples. The SITE program looked at a number of methodologies that are more affordable and faster than the highly accurate, but costly and time consuming, HRMS. The high cost of dioxin analysis is an important issue in the characterization of dioxin levels in the Saginaw Bay watershed. Many of the samples that were used in this study are from Midland soils and from sediments and floodplain soils from the Tittabawassee and Saginaw Rivers. ( Note that Dow chose not to participate in this cutting edge technology)

House Bill 4617 passes the Michigan House This is the legislation to lift the "facility" designation on frequently flooded areas of the floodplain. More on this legislation in future. Special thanks to Representative Williams for opposing this legislation which will impact the cleanup of dioxin as well as other contaminated sites around the state. This legislation is a burden on the taxpayers and a shameful attempt to cripple the ability of the DEQ and Department of Community Health to protect Michigan's natural resources and public health.

Dow Clean Up Your Dioxin Now signs Any clue as to the person stealing these signs? Several have asked for initial sign and others to have their stolen signs replaced. Your signs will be delivered this week. Apologize for the delay.
Enjoy the summer!

Michelle Hurd Riddick Lone Tree Council michdave@aol.com


Source: Lone Tree Council/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.