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Environment


Opponents rally against dumping Cleveland Harbor dredge into Lake Erie
Advocates say the materials could contaminate Cleveland's water supply
Story by ANN GLAUSSER


 
Opponents do not want dredged materials, such as the materials in this photo, to end up in Cleveland water supplies.
Courtesy of U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Norfolk District
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In The Region:

Clarification: The deadline for comment to the Ohio EPA about the plan is this Thursday. The Army Corps deadline is March 26.

About two dozen people spoke out yesterday against a plan by the Army Corps of Engineers to dump river dredging into Lake Erie. They turned otu for a hearing called by the Ohio EPA in downtown Cleveland.

LISTEN: GLAUSSER ON DREDGING

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Opponents of the plan dominated the hearing at Cleveland Public Library after a power outage scuttled a formal presentation of the details.

Advocates representing numerous environmental groups argued contaminants in the dredged silt such as heavy metals and PCBs could taint drinking water.

In the past, dredgings have been deposited into manmade dikes.

But now the Army Corps says they are not as contaminated as in years past, and wants to dump them near a water intake pipe in the open lake.

Cleveland City Council has passed a resolution opposing the plan and urging the Ohio EPA to deny its certification. Council member Michael Polensek opposses he dumping.

Here's a link to the Ohio EPA documents:
http://wwwapp.epa.state.oh.us/dsw/401Applications/CHD2014/ 

"We are in support of dredging of the river, of the harbor, and all appropriate areas adjacent to it, to support commerce," Polensek says. " However, we are vehemently opposed to the depositing of the
dredging materials in the lake…We have no idea at this point how it will contaminate the water process, what we’ll have to do to add additional chemicals, additional treatments."

The public has until March 26 to comment to the Army Corps in writing about the proposal. The Ohio EPA deadline for comments is this Thursday, March 13

A decision on the plan is expected in April.

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