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Environment


Ohio EPA shoots down Army Corps plan to dump dredge in Lake Erie
State says the evidence that the sediment is safe enough is lacking
by WKSU's M.L. SCHULTZE


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M.L. Schultze
 
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The Ohio EPA is vetoing plans by the Army Corps of Engineers to dump dredged material from the Cuyahoga River and Cleveland Harbor out into Lake Erie. WKSU’s M.L. Schultze has more.

LISTEN: State vetoes Army Corps

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For 40 years, the material dredged from the harbor and river has been fenced off by special dikes, largely because of the toxic metals and other materials that had sunk into the sediment.

But the Army Corps, which is obligated to find the least expensive and most responsible alternatives, wanted to change that by dumping newly dredged material miles out in the lake. It said testing showed the untreated sediment is now clean enough to justify that.

The Army Corps needed the Ohio EPA to go along. And Monday, the EPA said no.

It said the dumping could raise PCB levels in fish and that the Army Corps did not offer enough data. A statement from Ohio EPA Director Craig Butler says, “placing material in the open lake doesn't make sense for the health of Lake Erie."

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