Wednesday, January 16, 2013

EPA to outline plans for removal of dioxin-laden mud from Passaic River
LYNDHURST — Federal environmental officials will explain plans to remove dioxin-laden mud from the Passaic River near the banks of Riverside County Park at a public meeting Thursday night at the town’s senior center.
The meeting will center on a recently released report that details the $20 million cleanup project — a complex operation that will involve dredging enough contaminated river mud to fill 1,500 large dump trucks, shipping it downriver in barges low enough to get under 17 small bridges and finally putting a barrier over the remaining mud strong enough to stand up to major storms.
“We want to make sure the public has an opportunity to review these plans and offer input,” said David Kluesner, a spokesman for the federal Environmental Protection Agency, which is overseeing the project.
The Passaic River is one of the most polluted waterways in the nation and a federal Superfund site for 17 miles, from the Dundee Dam that spans Garfield and Clifton to Newark Bay.
For decades, the only large amount of dioxin — a highly toxic industrial chemical and a known carcinogen — in the river was next to the former Diamond Alkali plant in Newark where the infamous Vietnam War-era defoliant Agent Orange was manufactured and dioxin was discharged.

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