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'People For Safe Water' Still Battling US EPA Over Landfill

People for Safe Water displayed examples of the barrels containing hazardous waste at the Tremont City Barrel Fill.
Wayne Baker
/
WYSO
People for Safe Water displayed examples of the barrels containing hazardous waste at the Tremont City Barrel Fill.

The group People for Safe Water held a public forum in Springfield this week to voice concerns over the Environmental Protection Agency's refusal to stick with its original cleanup plan for the Tremont City Barrel Fill.
 

The U.S. EPA stated in 2010 that they would clean up the Tremont City landfill by removing all of the 300,000 gallons of hazardous waste from the site for close to $55 million, but subsequently changed its plan. The new remedy calls for reburying some of the waste and empty drums for about half that.

71-year-old Laura Kaffenbarger lives near the landfill and she believes there's a reason why the new remedy is in place.
 

A display protesting the US EPA's proposed clean-up plan for the Tremont City Barrel Fill, "Toxic Tea Party," was set-up at the City Hall forum held by People for Safe Water.
Credit Wayne Baker / WYSO
/
WYSO
A display protesting the US EPA's proposed clean-up plan for the Tremont City Barrel Fill, "Toxic Tea Party," was set-up at the City Hall forum held by People for Safe Water.

"Money...money. Somehow I believe Waste Management has persuaded the U.S. EPA to go with the cheaper choice. That's not our choice," she said. "We want all hazardous waste to be removed."

Waste Management represents the responsible parties expected to pay for the cleanup. Kaffenbarger stated that People for Safe Water will continue to fight them.

"If being right and caring for our environment wins the battle, yes, than we will win the battle," she said.

The U.S. EPA didn't return calls seeking comment for this story.

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Credit Wayne Baker / WYSO
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WYSO
From L-R: Clark County Health Commissioner Charles Patterson, People for Safe Water President, Marilyn Welker, Springfield City Commissioner Karen Duncan and Hydrogeological Consultant Peter Townsend lead Monday's hazardous waste discussion.