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Andrew C. Revkin

Albany Survey Of Toxic Sites Is Unpublished

New York State environmental officials last year compiled an internal list of more than 1,500 places where soil or water had been contaminated with M.T.B.E., a gasoline additive that makes water taste like turpentine and is a possible cause of cancer and other health problems.

The tally of M.T.B.E. sites is more than three times the number reported publicly in the state's toxic-spills database, which real estate buyers and suppliers of drinking water use to spot contamination problems.

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