Archives for mercury

WERU Special 8/25/14

Producer/Host: Amy Browne
Studio Engineer: Joel Mann

The US Army Corps of Engineers and Maine DOT are proposing a dredging project in Searsport Harbor that would result in nearly a million cubic yards of materials being dumped in Penobscot Bay near Islesboro. The project would deepen and widen the shipping channel. Supporters say that would improve commerce in the port, but opponents say the economic and environmental risks far outweigh any potential benefits.

Joining me in the studio today are Joel Pitcher of the Maine Lobstering Union, and attorney Kim Tucker. She represents the Maine Lobstering Union, Pemaquid Muscle Farm, and the Sierra Club of Maine as well as some individual members of the Zone D lobster council. The program also features excerpts from an interview with Dr. Kevin Yeager- an independent scientist who previously worked on the Holtrachem/Mallinkrodt mercury case in the federal court system. He is the author of a new report that raises serious concerns about the plan– among them the possibility that inert mercury in the sediment may be converted to a more toxic form and make its way into the food chain in Penobscot Bay. He also criticizes the methology the Army Corps used in their sediment sampling.

RadioActive 2/20/14

Producer/Host: Meredith DeFrancesco

Issue: Environmental and Social Justice

Program Topic: Mercury from Holtrachem site closes mouth of Penobscot to Lobster Fishing, Mallinckrodt, LLC resists cleanup; Irving instigates metallic mining law changes

Key Discussion Points:
a) This Saturday, 7 square miles of the Gulf of Maine, at the mouth of the Penobscot River, will be closed to lobster and crab fishing due to mercury contamination from the Holtrachem site in Orrington.
b) Concurrently, the liable corporation, Mallinckrodt, LLC, is appealing its cleanup responsibility before the Maine Supreme Court.

c) We also re-visit an industry move to dismantle current mining regulations in Maine. Monday, the legislature’s Environment and Natural Resources Committee will hold a public hearing on the proposed changes, recently reformulated by the Board of Environmental Protection to allow for even less environmental protection.

Jesse Graham, director of Maine Peoples Alliance,
Nick Bennett, staff scientist Natural Resources Council of Maine,