Archives for mercury

WERU News Report 3/18/14

Producer/Host: Amy Browne

The Maine Department of Marine Resources held a public hearing in Bucksport last night, as part of their process of the closure of the lobster and crab fisheries near the mouth of the Penobscot River due to elevated mercury levels. The department became aware of the elevated levels after they were given results from independent testing done in association with the Maine People’s Alliance’s decade long legal battle over the clean up of the former Holtrachem site in Orrington. The Department of Marine Fisheries decided to close this specific area rather than issuing an advisory on all Maine lobster.
Last night’s public hearing was facilitated by Kevin Rousseau & Meredith Mendelson of the Dept of Marine Resources, and Dr Andrew Smith, the State Toxicologist with Maine Center for Disease Control. It was required as part of the process of making February’s emergency closure a regular rule, before the emergency rule expires in May. DMR Deputy Commissioner Meredith Mendelson provided some back ground. An informal question and answer session was held, followed by a formal public comment period.

The deadline for comments to the Department of Marine Fisheries regarding the closure of the lobster and crab fisheries near the mouth of the Penobscot River, is Friday, March 28th

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,

Weekend Voices 1/30/10

Producer/Host: Amy Browne

The company responsible for cleaning up hundreds of thousands of tons of soil contaminated by mercury at the former Holtrachem chemical plant in Orrington, is asking the state to approve a cheaper, less thorough, and quicker, clean up plan for the site.   Mallinckrodt Incorporated, a subsidiary of a multibillion dollar corporation, would save an estimated $100 million, and leave behind a large quantity of mercury in the soil, if their plan to remove only the most contaminated section is approved.   Mercury is a potent neurotoxin, and the former Holtrachem site is on the banks of the Penobscot River, just a few miles upstream from Penobscot Bay.

The Board of Environmental Protection held a public hearing in Orrington, Thursday night to hear what people think about the proposal.  WERU was there, and today we bring you excerpts from the testimony.

Baby Talk 11/20/08

Producer/Host: Cathy Jacobs

Topic: Vaccines

Are all vaccines equally important?  Why are some parents concerned about vaccines?  What are the concerns about mercury and aluminum in vaccines?

Guest: Dr. Robert Sears, Board Certified Pediatrician; author of The Vaccine Book

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