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Anytime now, EPA Regional Administrator Pete Lopez is expected to issue two major decisions that could affect the health of the Hudson River for generations to come. First, EPA will be issuing its long-awaited final Five Year Review of the Hudson River PCBs Superfund Site. Initially, EPA claimed that the cleanup was working as intended in the River above the Troy dam, even though it will take decades longer than EPA targeted for fish from the Hudson to be clean enough to eat even once per month. In the final report, EPA must recognize that the cleanup has actually been woefully less effective than we were promised and is “not protective” of human health and the environment.Second, EPA is deciding whether to issue a Certificate of Completion to GE, which would risk letting the company off the hook for cleaning up the rest of the PCB contamination in the Upper Hudson River. A certificate of completion should not be issued for a cleanup that is missing EPA’s targets and continuing to pose a threat to people and wildlife.Governor Cuomo, members of Congress, Riverkeeper and our partners all agree that EPA can’t let GE walk away and leave New Yorkers holding the bag.Newly-released analyses from the NYS Department of Environmental Conservation and Scenic Hudson show that toxic PCBs continue to plague the Upper Hudson River. And, recent findings from the Hudson River Natural Resource Trustees (NOAA, the Department of Interior, and NYSDEC) indicate that PCBs in the Hudson are harming the native mink population. Another study, commissioned by Riverkeeper and our partners, shows that it could take much longer for fish in the Hudson River to recover from the PCB contamination than EPA originally anticipated.Here’s the bottom line: EPA must make GE finish the job. More dredging is needed in the Upper Hudson River and a full remedial investigation is needed in the Lower Hudson River. Join us in urging EPA Regional Administrator Pete Lopez to issue a “not protective” determination in the Five Year Review and to withhold the Certificate of Completion until the job is truly done. Add your personal story and connection to the Hudson River in the letter below that will be sent to Regional Administrator Lopez.
Read the sample letter (below) and edit it as you see fit. Personalized comments have a greater impact!
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Dear Administrator Lopez [Decision Maker],
Sincerely,[Your Name] [Your Address] [City, State ZIP]
20 Secor Road
Ossining, New York 10562
t: 800 21-RIVER