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Coalition Letter Which Requests That Governor Hochul Comprehensively Remediate All Toxic Sites in the Gowanus Canal Community to "Pre-Disposal Conditions."

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This coalition letter is a joint effort between Toxics Targeting and Please visit their web site to learn more about this campaign.
You can also visit: Campaign to Require Governor Hochul to Clean Up All Toxic Sites in the Gowanus Canal Community to "Pre-Disposal Conditions"

The Honorable Kathy Hochul
Governor of New York
The State Capitol
Albany, NY 12224

Dear Governor Hochul:

We, the undersigned, write respectfully to request that you remediate all Inactive Hazardous Waste Disposal Sites, Brownfields, hazardous substance releases and other documented contamination threats to the Gowanus Canal in Brooklyn, NY in strict compliance with State mandates requiring comprehensive toxic cleanups to "pre-disposal conditions" and pollution spill "source removal" in order to fulfill all applicable regulatory requirements.

As documented by the Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) data presented below, it is beyond dispute that your administration, as well as earlier administrations you served in, routinely and systematically failed to remediate dozens of massively polluted toxic sites that contaminate the Gowanus Canal.

See: Public Health and Environmental Toxic Threats Along the Gowanus Canal That Reportedly Do Not Meet All Applicable Cleanup Standards

That is why this immensely impaired toxic waterway was included circa 2010 on the National Priorities List for Federal Superfund Cleanup. The U. S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is in the process of dredging nearly 600,000 cubic yards of "highly−contaminated sediment" from the canal at a cost of $1.5 billion.

Regarding this remediation, EPA declared that:

"The remedy relies on the control of upland sources of contamination to the Canal, including the remediation of three former MGP [Manufactured Gas Plants, not in the original] sites adjacent to the Canal−−Carroll Gardens/Public Place (formerly known as "Citizens Gas Works"); former Metropolitan MGP, and former Fulton Municipal Works MGP (Fulton MGP) (emphasis added)."

See: Gowanus NPL

Your administration reportedly has no plans to remove cancer-causing coal tar contamination up to 150 feet deep at the three MGPs. In addition, DEC has failed to remediate more than 35 additional toxic sites "upland" of the Gowanus Canal in strict compliance with all applicable regulatory requirements.

As New York's Governor and Chief Executive, you have a duty to safeguard our state's public health and environment by strictly enforcing applicable laws and regulatory requirements. If you fail to require pollution source-removals at all "upland" Gowanus Canal sites and restore them to "pre-disposal conditions," EPA's massive dredging effort will ultimately be recontaminated by the same toxic sources that originally polluted this massively impaired waterway.

That would be an unthinkable and unacceptable exercise in futility. It must be avoided in order to safeguard public health in the Gowanus Canal community.

New York's Legacy of Toxic Sites

New York is threatened by a vast legacy of thousands of toxic chemical dumps, former industrial sites and abandoned municipal landfills as well as hundreds of thousands of leaking petroleum tanks and hazardous substance spills. According to government regulatory data, the vast majority of these environmental and public health hazards have never been comprehensively investigated or remediated in strict compliance with the maximum level of State or Federal cleanup requirements.

Your administration routinely fails to enforce State Environmental Remediation Program requirements codified in 6 NYCRR (New York Codes, Rules and Regulations) PART 375-2.8 (a):

"The goal of the remedial program for a specific site is to restore that site to pre-disposal conditions (emphasis added), to the extent feasible."

Your administration similarly fails to enforce Section 171 of the New York Navigation Law regarding uncontrolled releases of petroleum and hazardous substances:

"It is the purpose of this article to ensure a clean environment and healthy economy for the state by preventing the unregulated discharge of petroleum which may result in damage to lands, waters or natural resources of the state by authorizing the department of environmental conservation to respond quickly to such discharges and effect prompt cleanup and removal of such discharges (emphasis added), giving first priority to minimizing environmental damage, and by providing for liability for damage sustained within the state as a result of such discharges."


Given New York's long-standing and on-going failure to remediate toxic problems around the Gowanus Canal in strict compliance with the highest levels of cleanup mandated by our state's public health and environmental protection laws, tens of thousands of residents of that community face unacceptable public health risks, including low-income and minority residents that are New York's most vulnerable citizens.

The Gowanus Canal community is plagued by soil gas vapor intrusion hazards that are documented at many of the major toxic sites documented herein. Yet no comprehensive survey has been undertaken to identify or safeguard homes, schools, businesses and other structures that are contaminated by this known hazard.

Unremediated toxic pollution also could be spread by increased flooding associated with climate change since enormous quantities of Light Non-Aqueous Phase Liquid (LNAPL), such as petroleum contamination, underlie many of the toxic sites surrounding the Gowanus Canal. For example, Superstorm Sandy polluted vast areas of New York City when extensive flooding distributed toxic pollution that was never cleaned up.

As Governor of New York, you are responsible for resolving environmental and public health problems on a comprehensive basis without any further delay. It is imperative that our state no longer tolerates inadequate remediation of toxic contamination hazards by enforcing the strict enforcement policy we propose. If you implement that policy, you would set a standard for effective regulatory action that could be replicated all over New York and from coast-to-coast. With all due respect, if you fail to adopt that policy, you would be directly responsible for imperiling New York's public health and environment and must be held accountable.

We trust you will find our respectful request self-explanatory. We will contact you to arrange a meeting to discuss our request for urgent action. Thank you for your consideration and for your public service.

Very truly yours,

cc: Hon. Eric Adams
Hon. Charles Schumer
Hon. Nydia Velázquez
Hon. Antonio Reynoso
Hon. Steven Englebright
Hon. Jo Anne Simon
Hon. Jabari Brisport
Hon. Shahana Hanif
Hon. Lisa Garcia
Hon. Mary T. Bassett
Hon. Basil Seggos

Total Signatory Count: 1134

Beth Katleman
18 2nd street
Brooklyn , Ny
1692 Ellis Hollow Rd. Apt 2
Ithaca, NY
Maxine Kane
Deborah Kahkejian
398 State Route 69
Williamstown , New York
Matthew F. Carney III
201 Walnut St. Apt. No. 102
Corning , New York
Taffy Williams
Judith Fletcher
525 W. 238th St., Apt. A1, Apt. A1
The Bronx, NY
Jason Grabisch
77 Arden Boulevard,
West Hempstead, NY
James Spica
WVKR radio
152 bloomer road
lagrangeville, New York
ilse Funk
Otsego 2000
238 Mill Rd,
Cherry Valley, NY
Melissa Hamilton
8083 Falls Rd
Trumansburg, New York
Ken Deschere
202 South Hill Terrace
Ithaca, New York
Mary Ann McDonough
65 highland ave otisville ny 10963
Otisville, Country — USA*
Joy Janzen
Voice of Gowanus
256 3rd Avenue
Brooklyn, NY
Debbie Biltonen
Know Your Roots
6031 Brook Rd
Trumansburg, NY
Laurie Goodhart
Laurie Goodhart Ar
PO Box 545
Cambridge, NY
Nicholas Prychodko
Subscription for Order 484749063
PO Box 2138, 195 HAINES PATH
Karen Stamm
366 Broadway
New York, New York
Alice Artzt
51 Hawthorne Ave.
51 Hawthorne Ave.
Princeton, NJ
Anthony Straka
26 Honey Lane
Wappingers Falls, NY
Patrice Jennings
244 Bald Hill Road
Spencer, New York
Lydian Green
4121 South St. Ext.
Trumansburg, NY
bruce Krug
2771 West Rd
constableville, New York
Julie Mundt
607 Broad St., 1st Floor Left
Endicott, NY
Bernadette Nigro
19 4th Street apt 2
Brooklyn 11231, NY
J E Delman
Louise Henrie
417 2nd ST
Ithaca, NY
Cheryl Kindt
Binghamton , NeeYork
Lynda Caspe
- Salutation * -
150 Franklin Street, #7
New York, NY
Steve Gordon
Ithaca College
110 Overlook Rd
Ithaca, NY
Marianne Gagnier
Katharine B. Wolpe
Village Independent Democrats
107 East 10th St., Apt. 1C
New York City, New York
Ann Mallozzi
2140 Long Creek Road
Apalachin, NY
harold kugelmass
ithaca, NY
Delora Specker
9 East Miller Rd.
Ithaca, New York
Richard Kellman
429 Arnold Rd.
Lisle, NY
Carolyn Fellman
15 Park St.
Moravia, NY
Carmen Robello
Rosalinda Tull
185 Nevins Street Apt 5D
Brooklyn , NY
Josephine Girardin
27 Reilly Street
West Islip, NY
Mary Kaszyca
111 Tamarack Ln
Trumansburg, NY
Margo Alexander
5585 Searsburg Rd
Neil Freson
26 Bitternell Lane
Henrietta, NY
Joel Chaffee
424 west 154th st APT 2
New York, NY
Bridget Wilson
P.O. Box 4224
Ithaca, Ny
Camille Doucet
30 Marsh Rd
Ithaca, NY
Marcia Knapp
2433 Ballina Rd.
Cazenovia, NY
brenda lee
16 quarry dr
wappingers falls, ny
Mary Mattner
198 Union Street
Brooklyn , NY