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E.P.A asking for comments on contaminated landfill, again

By Julie Bierach, KWMU

SAINT LOUIS, MO – The E.P.A. will again take public comments on a proposed plan to isolate radioactive waste illegally dumped at the West Lake Landfill in Bridgeton.

For 25 years, the landfill has been the site of radioactive waste generated by the Mallinckrodt Chemical Works in the 1940's.

In 2006, the E.P.A. released their plan to cover the contaminated areas at the landfill with a $25 million cap.

Debbie Kring, community involvement coordinator for the E.P.A., says the agency is re-opening the public comment period because some opponents have expressed concerns that a potential levee breach could cause the waste to spread throughout the community.

"Some people mentioned if an earthquake occurred, what would happen? What would the vulnerabilities be? Some people were really pushing to have the waste material hauled off," said Kring.

Kring said the Corps of Engineers and representatives from the levee district will give a better understanding as to why the E.P.A prefers to cap the materials.

The agency will not make a final decision on cleanup alternatives until reviewing and evaluating comments from the public.

The public hearing will be held next Thursday at 6:30 p.m at the Bridgeton Community Center.

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