89.1 WEMU

1-4 Dioxane

Lisa Wozniak
Michigan League of Conservation Voters / michiganlcv.org

The 1,4 Dioxane plume emanating from the old Gelman Sciences facility in Scio Township is moving slowly moving towards the Huron River and, if left unchecked, could be dangerous to Ann Arbor's drinking water.  In this month's edition of "1st Friday Focus on the Environment," Michigan League of Conservation Voters executive director Lisa Wozniak speaks to Mitch Adelman from the Michigan Department of Environmental Quality about what is being done to contain this hazardous situation.


Yousef Rabhi
Michigan House Democrats / housedems.com

A week after a public forum on the 1,4 dioxane plume contaminating groundwater in Scio Township and Ann Arbor, you’ll get the latest on what is being done to address the problem. The potential carcinogen continues to spread in groundwater from the old Gelman Sciences facility on Wagner Road in Scio Township, slowly moving towards the Huron River. In this week’s "Issues of the Environment," WEMU’s David Fair catches up with State Representative Yousef Rabhi (D-Ann Arbor) to see what is being done to move from plume containment to actual clean-up. 


Christopher Taylor
City of Ann Arbor / a2gov.org

The city of Ann Arbor continues its push to remain an environmental leader.  There are ongoing efforts to reduce its carbon footprint and better remediate a 1,4 dioxane plume.  Many of the environmental initiatives and local opportunities will be highlighted in the upcoming 17th Annual Mayor’s Green Fair.  David Fair covers these topics with Ann Arbor Mayor Christopher Taylor in this week’s edition of "Issues of the Environment." 


Washtenaw County Public Health / www.ewashtenaw.org/government/departments/public_health/

Recent events in our community, like the Ann Arbor area’s 1,4-dioxane plume, have increased residents’ awareness of – and concern about – the chemicals companies use.  While many state and federal regulations may exist that govern chemical storage and manufacturing, these regulations generally do not involve an onsite inspection component.  As a result, the programs are enforced on a complaint basis or incident, after the fact.  In this week’s "Issues of the Environment," WEMU’s David Fair talks with Kristen Schweighoefer,  Environmental Health Director for Washtenaw County Public Health, about 25 years of effort to manage these issues in Washtenaw County.


Jorge Avellan / WEMU

Yousef Rabhi, representing the 53rd District, is one of three new State House Representatives from Washtenaw County.  We sent WEMU’s Jorge Avellan to spend a day with Rabhi and report on the work he’s doing on your behalf in Lansing.


1,4 Dioxane
Wikipedia Media Commons / wikipedia.org

Washtenaw County, along with the city of Ann Arbor and the Huron River Watershed Council, will legally be able to intervene in discussions about the 1,4 Dioxane situation in our area.  


Washtenaw County
jimmywayne / flickr.com

A Washtenaw County Circuit Court judge will hear a motion this morning at 9AM regarding the 1,4 Dioxane situation in our area.  


Washtenaw County Public Health
Washtenaw County / ewashtenaw.org

Washtenaw County, along with the its health department and health officer, has taken legal action on isses related to the area's 1,4 Dioxane contamination plume. 


Jorge Avellan / 89.1 WEMU

For decades, the Michigan Department of Environmental Quality has been working with Gelman Sciences to clean-up the 1,4 Dioxane chemical the company released in certain parts of Ann Arbor.  To this day, the DEQ continues to say the levels are below their precautionary standards and are not harmful. To give voice to concerned residents, city, county and state officials put together Thursday night's town hall forum. 


Barbara Lucas / 89.1 WEMU

Ann Arbor’s dioxane plume is rather unusual, in that it emanates from just one source. That source is the old Gelman Sciences facility on Wagner Road in Scio Township. Other area's of dioxane contamination around the country, such as  the KL Avenue Landfill in Kalamazoo, have many “Responsible Parties” contributing to the contamination problem. Even with a single source, assigning responsibility for clean-up remains complicated in Ann Arbor.  In this installment of "The Green Room"  we try to untangle the confusing web of who is who when it comes to liability. 


Jorge Avellan

Ann Arbor has a new city administrator, and he already has a vision for the city. 
 


Barbara Lucas / 89.1 WEMU

It’s been over three decades since Ann Arbor’s groundwater contamination was discovered, and throughout this time, citizen science and community advocacy have had a crucial role.  In this edition  of 'The Green Room,' Barbara Lucas looks at the uphill battle from its earliest steps.


Barbara Lucas / 89.1 WEMU

  The National Priorities List is the list of hazardous waste sites in the United States eligible for long-term remedial action financed under the federal Superfund program.  Currently there are 1,171 sites on the NPL, either being cleaned up or waiting for their turn.  Should Ann Arbor’s 1,4-dioxane contamination be “listed” too?  Weighing benefits against potential stigma costs is the subject of this week’s Green Room segment in our ongoing series.


wikipedia

The University of Michigan’s research in human and environmental health is of global import.  Should the university “think local” as well?  In this segment of WEMU’s “The Green Room,” Barbara Lucas looks at the University of Michigan and the Ann Arbor area’s 1,4-dioxane contamination. 

 


WEMU

Drinking water samples from more than three dozen homes in Ann Arbor and Scio Township will be tested for 1,4 dioxane. 


City of Ann Arbor

The city of Ann Arbor has released its annual drinking water quality report.  Brian Steglitz is the manager of water treatment services for the city.  He says they continue to meet or exceed all state and federal regulatory requirements.  There is no issue with lead in Ann Arbor's drinking water like there is in Flint.

Jeff Irwin
Courtesy Photo / housedems.com

A town hall meeting will be held this evening from 6PM to 8PM in Ann Arbor to discuss the latest dioxane plume situation in the area.


Roger Rayle / Scio Residents for Safe Water

Since 1995, 4,000 prohibition zones have been put in place in Michigan to “manage risk,” i.e. prevent people from coming into contact with contaminated soil or water.  In this installment of WEMU’s “The Green Room,” Barbara Lucas looks at how the balance between cleaning up pollution versus managing the risk is playing out when it comes to the Ann Arbor area's 1.4 dioxane plume. 


Yousef Rabhi
Patrik Holubik / 89.1 WEMU

There is a long road ahead to adequately address an expanding 1,4 dioxane plume in the Ann Arbor area. The plume has contaminated wells in Scio township and Ann Arbor and is slowly moving towards the city's municipal water supply at Barton Pond. In this month's '1st Friday Focus on the Environment',  Liza Wozniak talks with Washtenaw County Commissioner Yousef Rabhi about the next steps in the journey.  


WikiCommons

A 1,4 Dioxane plume has contaminated the well water of a family in Washtenaw County.


Washtenaw County

 

Officials are increasing pressure on the state to stop a dangerous underground dioxane plume before it reaches the Huron River, Ann Arbor’s main water source.


Debbie Dingell
U.S. House of Representatives / house.gov

Congresswoman Debbie Dingell gave her now annual "state of the district" address at an Ann Arbor-Ypsilanti Regional Chamber luncheon Thursday.


http://053.housedems.com/

    

As Concerns About the Pall/Gelman Plume Linger, Rep. Jeff Irwin Pushes House Bill to Require the MDEQ to Align Contaminate Clean-up Standards with EPA Standards

Pall Life Sciences is  leaving the Ann Arbor area this summer, prompting many to become concerned about the company's commitment to ongoing remediation of 1-4, Dioxane contamination.