Sunday, February 11, 2007

Alec Baldwin at Huffington Post: More Cautionary Tales

Comment: I have not visited Toms River, NJ home of Little Leagues Allstars, but I've worked for the EPA there in government required cultural resources assessed, i.e., archaeology on the large chemical plant there under various ownership as part of an EPA National Priority Superfund program over 15 years ago. I might add there were others in NJ and NY some I did also work on. The contaminate issue is troubling, often the previous company was responsible, if in this case remote-sensing a relatively new science finds the proverbial "buried drums" which were not regulated enough to prevent illegal "business" (ask John Mellencamp, recently on Randi Rhodes' show on AirAmerica radio, his town had what was thought regulated drum storage instead had umpteen times the regulated limit). Today, every drum in NY is tracked, officially. The remediation there required a large aquifer pump, treat, and spray. However at the time if I recall, either through Newt Gingrich's new "Republican Semantics 101" course for people in government or otherwise, the clean-up law funding, (one-half (0.5) of it paid by the chemical industry's insurance the other by double fines and double costs) was stopped when it was found that mortgage grantors, i.e., banks could also be held responsible for the mis-management on toxic chemical sites some of which, I might add, are almost absurd given that they are processed over very larger issues as you have raised, global "contrail" effects, which some of the polluters take advantage of, by getting out of the country I found. It's not my place on the airplane, but there have been some very vocal objections by people in that industry that I recall. One is to stop the dumping of fuel at altitude on trans-oceanic flights, which a pilot was very vocal about, once at altitude. Lufthansa, when I inquired said it was a regular practice and the fuel evaporates before getting to the ocean surface. Another article I recall was the inventor of new seat cushion material that would not create as hazardous a smoke condition in airline fires, which occur statistically less than I imagine people struck on golf courses by lightning. At the time the new material was just out after the regulations had been rewritten and the government would not "bend" to make it the case. My grandfather was a "crash boat" pilot at the old Flushing Airport for commercial seaplanes (another travesty, the tidal gates there not maintained, flooded, with a crane on the runway that might have been used in FAA mapped emergency, and also resulting breeding "ground zero" for the West Nile virus) and pulled military survivors from a crashed B-24 so I sometimes am attuned to these things, some regrettably.

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