If you have been following the month-old, unfolding controversy around Metro Water Service's plan to bury toxic debris and contaminated soil 300 yards from the Cumberland River and next to Salemtown/Germantown, I do not have much to report.
I do not have much to report because after a string of email responses to my requests for information about the project, media communications specialist Sonia Harvat seems to have stopped replying to me altogether. (On a side note: CM Erica Gilmore's office is still not really offering me any insight on what she is doing about this either).
My last email was sent a week ago and I was fairly specific in my request for information (CC'ed to CM Gilmore):
So, MWS employees have measured the amount of chemicals or contaminants that could be running off the pile during every rain event since the pile was created 9 years ago? Including weekends and holidays? Is there written analyses or other documentation on that monitoring?In your interview with Demetria Kalodimos you indicated that you did not know to what degree the pile was contaminated with petroleum even though construction workers told her that almost 100 loads of dirt from the pile had already been dumped into the incinerator basement. Have tests for levels been conducted in the weeks since that interview aired? If so, who has conducted the tests?I noticed today that dumping is continuing in the new MWS landfill and that heavy machinery has also cut down the size of the petroleum-laced dirt pile. Is the dirt from the pile once again going into the incinerator basement with the debris or is the dirt being hauled offsite? If the dirt is going into the basement-landfill, is your agency testing to make sure that the dirt does not first need to be remediated for high levels of petroleum? Do you have documentation on those tests?Was the private company that originally was supposed to deal with the petroleum-laced dirt pile paid for services they did not render? If so, is Metro Water making any effort to get those payments back or claim damages for failure to follow through since 2004?Regards,
I'm just your average dolt with common knowledge about landfills and pollution, but I was hoping that Metro Water could explain to me how they can be sure that the contaminated stuff they are dumping down the street from my house is safe when contained in a basement, capped in a way that is reminiscent of Love Canal. I have the distinct impression that they prefer I just go away and let them dump as they intended to: quietly and with no blowback.