Brockovich on Sand Plant Pollution

California-based environmental activist Erin Brockovich told Wedron residents Sunday afternoon her staff’s forensic testing of private wells has pinpointed toxic groundwater pollution to the town’s only industry — Fairmount Minerals, formerly known as Wedron Silica.

“We can prove by our lab tests that the toxic chemicals found at alarming high levels under Wedron originated from the town’s sand mine operations,” Brockovich told more than 200 people in the Serena High School gymnasium. “We are confident of our facts, which now point directly at the sand company.”

Brockovich and her chief environmental scientist, Robert Bowcock, told the crowd, besides “sky-high levels of benzene,” certain other solvent pollutants found from their testing of private well water match chemicals used at the silica processing plant.

Brockovich said it was the testing that brought her and her colleagues to La Salle County following multiple requests from Wedron citizens.

“We now know from those results, the pollution is not from a rail car spill or a gas station tank or some corn silo guy — it is definitely from an industrial source,” she said.

Last Wednesday, Bowcock told The Times, his lab’s results showed benzene gas levels in the groundwater to be 520,000 times the maximum federal limit and liquid out of some residential taps probably could run a lawn mower engine.”

Scientist: Tap water could probably run a lawn mower… it’s real gas — 500,000 times legal limit for benzene — “I’ve never seen such high levels” — Brockovich visits Illinois community (VIDEO)


Daily Times
 (Illinois), March 6, 2013: Contacted by phone Wednesday, [environmental scientist Robert] Bowcock expressed shock and alarm from lab results recently processed from Wedron [Illinois] groundwater samples […] “The federal government allows five parts per billion of benzene as its maximum level,” said Bowcock. “The samples I collected and had tested were at 2,600,000 per billion. That is 520,000 times the legal limit. That is the highest we’ve ever had from a residential well water supply. The lab even had to dilute the samples before proper testing could be performed.” Bowcock said, “You could probably run a lawn mower with this foul, toxic water coming out of certain taps in Wedron. The lab and I have never seen such high levels (of benzene and other toxic solvents). It’s real gas.”

Photo: Steve Stout

Daily Times (Illinois), March 10, 2013:  California-based environmental activist Erin Brockovich told Wedron residents Sunday afternoon her staff’s forensic testing of private wells has pinpointed toxic groundwater pollution to the town’s only industry — Fairmount Minerals […] “We now know from those results, the pollution is not from a rail car spill or a gas station tank or some corn silo guy — it is definitely from an industrial source,” she said. […] “Individually, you don’t have much of a voice, but together, the residents of Wedron will have power to recoup relocation and recovery from any potential medical bills. Without question, looking at the alarmingly high pollution levels, you all are facing real serious problems” [said  attorney Thomas Girardi…]

2 days later…

Daily Times (Illinois), March 12, 2013: The Serena Fire District recently received a $2,500 donation from Fairmount Minerals Technisand in Wedron. Serena Fire Chief Rodney Reese, left, accepts the check from Fairmount plant superintendent Jack Showden. Serena Fire District recently received a $2,500 donation from Northern Border Pipeline, whose pipeline runs through the district. Receiving the check from Northern Border Field technician Tom Fehr, middle, is Serena Deputy Fire Chief Steve Kellogg, left, with Serena Fire Chief Rodney Reese.

Watch: Brockovich speaks to community in Wedron, IL

http://enenews.com/scientist-tap-water-could-probably-run-a-lawn-mower-its-real-gas-ive-never-seen-such-high-levels-brockovich-speaks-to-community-video

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