Tell the EPA: It’s Time to Clean Up Industrial Pollution in Our River!

Please join us this Wednesday evening to tell the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) that leaving more than 2000 acres of our river in Portland contaminated with PCBs, DDT, heavy metals and other contaminants, is not acceptable.

Photo by Mike Houck

What: EPA Superfund Forum and Hearing
When: July 20, 2016, 11:30 am – 8:00 pm (Public hearing from 6 – 8 p.m.)
Where: Ambridge Center, 1333 NE Martin Luther King Blvd

Attend the Forum anytime between 11:30 a.m. – 8 p.m. to ask the EPA questions and submit comments, or come from 6 – 8 p.m. for a more traditional public hearing with a brief presentation from EPA followed by an opportunity to testify along with other concerned community members.

The EPA has spent nearly 16 years working behind closed doors with industrial polluters to develop a clean-up planfor the 2,200 acre Superfund Site that extends along the Willamette from the Broadway Bridge almost to the confluence with the Columbia. Under extreme pressure from polluters that include some of the biggest corporations in Oregon and on the planet, including Exxon-Mobil, Chevron, Phillips 66, BNSF Railroad, Schnitzer Steel and Northwest Natural, the EPA has produced a (non)plan which will leave contamination in place over 92% of this area. This is outrageous and it will leave our communities and our environment at risk for decades to come. It puts the interests of corporate polluters ahead of the interests of our community and our environment.

It is time to stand up and tell the agencies charged with protecting our community from pollution, that we are fed-up with agencies that put corporate profits ahead of public health.

Please come out next Wednesday and speak-out on behalf of our river!

Key messages:

  • The draft cleanup plan leaves far too much of the river contaminated for generations to come. We recommend that at least 1,000 acres of polluted sediment be removed from the river.
  • The draft cleanup plan relies too much on “monitored natural recovery,” a “do nothing” strategy that leaves pollution in the river in the hopes that it will either be covered over or flushed downstream.
  • The Cleanup Plan must result in the removal of the Fish Consumption Advisory so that eating fish from the Lower Willamette is just as safe as eating fish from anywhere else in the Willamette River System and this must occur within a 10-20 year time frame.
  • Creating a toxic waste disposal dump in our river is not acceptable—toxic dredged sediments must be taken to an appropriate landfill.
  • Entities with liability for the pollution must be held accountable and pay for a comprehensive cleanup that will protect the health of our communities, our environment and our wildlife.