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When Nature and Humans Collide

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Presentation on theme: "When Nature and Humans Collide"— Presentation transcript:

1 When Nature and Humans Collide

2 Times Beach, Missouri

3 Times Beach, Missouri Times Beach was founded in 1925 along the Meramec river - summer resort town (st. Louis) purchase of a 20 x 100 ft (6 by 30 m) lot for $67.50 included a six-month newspaper subscription.In its early years

4 Times Beach, Missouri the Great Depression and WWII --> town became a community of mostly low-income housing although (a few families spent winters in the city and summers in Times Beach as late as 1970) one small grocery store and one gas station on old Highway 66 to serve the residents

5 Times Beach, Missouri Prone to flooding throughout its history
1st buildings were built on stilts town experienced a devastating flood three weeks before an announcement by the EPA which led to the town's evacuation by 1985 and complete demolition by 1992.

6 Times Beach, Missouri The site of Times Beach now houses a 419 acre state park commemorating Route 66 In the early 1970s the town could not afford to pave its dirt roads & had dust problem

7 Times Beach, Missouri city hired Russell Bliss to oil the roads in the town between 1972 & 1976 Roads sprayed with waste oil Bliss subcontracted to haul waste for the Northeastern Pharmaceutical and Chemical Company (NEPACCO - During the Vietnam War producer of Agent Orange)

8 Times Beach, Missouri waste clay & water removed from plant contained levels of dioxin some 2,000 time higher than the dioxin content in Agent Orange dirt roads of Times Beach were sprayed with the lethal material

9 Times Beach, Missouri The EPA began to visit Times Beach in 1982, taking samples and tests that identified dangerous levels of dioxin in Times Beach soil. In December, 1982, the Meramec River flooded, further spreading the contamination of the town and other areas.

10 Times Beach, Missouri panic spread through the town and every illness and animal death was attributed to dioxin President Ronald Reagan formed a dioxin task force to study the effects of the chemical and in early 1983; the EPA announced the town buyout for $32 million dollars. 

11 Times Beach, Missouri 1985, the entire population of +2,000 had been evacuated (except 1 elderly couple who refused to leave) town was dis-incorporated entire site was quarantined as residents moved on to other areas

12 Times Beach, Missouri site sat silent behind barricades protecting public from the toxic threat 1996 and 1997 the government removed 265,000 tons of contaminated soil and debris from Times Beach and 28 other sites in eastern Misouri at a cost of $110 million dollars After the soil was incinerated, the incinerator was dismantled and the site was turned over to the State

13 Times Beach, Missouri

14 Times Beach, Missouri

15 Times Beach, Missouri

16 Times Beach, Missouri

17 Hinkley, California

18 Hinkley, California Unincorporated settlement in Mojave Desert location of a compressor station for PG&E's massive natural gas transmission pipelines natural gas has to be re-compressed approximately every three-hundred and fifty miles

19 Hinkley, California station uses large cooling towers to cool the compressors The water used in these cooling towers contained Hexavalent Chromium to prevent rust in the machinery Since the water was stored between uses in unlined ponds, it ultimately severely contaminated the groundwater in the town

20 Hinkley, California PG&E knew water contaminated but tried to cover it up - tried to buy property, tell people the chemical was safe found in vitamins 1996 class action law suit --> $330 million to 648 plaintiffs

21 Hinkley, California

22 erin Hinkley, California

23 Cameron, Missouri

24 Cameron, Missouri Border Clinton & Dekalb counties

25 Cameron, Missouri Original function was --> house of entertainment
> Isaac Baldwin opened a Post office Sold whiskey for $0.25 a gallon & $.10 for a jug of H20 For $20 would take people to St. Joseph’s 48 hour trip

26 Cameron, Missouri Part of hound dog trail (now US route 36 & interstate 72) Connected St. Joseph’s Hannibal (Missouri’s 2nd and 3rd largest cities prior to civil war )

27 Became railway town pop from 100 in 1859 to 3,000 in 1881
Cameron, Missouri Became railway town pop from 100 in 1859 to 3,000 in 1881 College town Wesleyan College run by Methodist Church

28 Now most people employed in health care & Education
Cameron, Missouri Now most people employed in health care & Education Pop in > 8, 312 Pop in > 9, 279

29 Cameron, Missouri Pharmacist Steve Erickson 1st to notice something wrong Large # of tumors - many benign not reported to health department Citizens concerned about large # of brain tumors and cancers in the town Since cases june town meeting to discuss concerns history

30 Cameron, Missouri EPA involved in testing to determine the cause
October test on old landfill Found formaldehyde, metals, dioxins & furans, pesticides, semi-volatile organic compounds & volatile organic compounds All except one soil sample (lead) all levels below screening levels Erin Brockovich

31 Cameron, Missouri Aug EPA soil test on former Rockwood industries plant (insulation company) Found high levels of lead and arsenic but not life threatening Feb EPA - test on drinking water near quarry no problems April 22, Cameron Brain tumor lawsuit (William Kemper (wife Karen) & Janet Lasher (lung cancer) filed by Erin Brockovich

32 Cameron, Missouri Prime Tanning Corp - use of Hexavlaent chromium to remove hair from hides

33 Cameron, Missouri waste sludge given to farms in Buchanan, Dekalb, Andrew & Clinton as free fertilizer lawsuit cameron

34 Chernobyl, Ukraine

35 Chernobyl, Ukraine City began in 1193 as a hunting lodge
Politically changed hands many times --> Lithuania, Poland and Russia Part of U.S.S.R from 1921 until 1991 (independent) 1964 site chosen for 1st nuclear power plant on Ukrainian soil

36 Chernobyl, Ukraine April 26, 1986 (mid-night)reactor #4 exploded (near town of Pripyat) 4 workers killed instantly 4 days later residents of Prypyat ordered to evacuate Worst nuclear disaster in the world Chernobyl

37 Chernobyl, Ukraine Further explosions & fire sent a plume of highly radioactive Fallout into the atmosphere & over an extensive geographical area 400 times more fallout was released than had been by the atomic bombing of Hiroshima

38 Chernobyl, Ukraine plume drifted over extensive parts of the western USSR, Eastern, western and Northern Europe, & as far away as Eastern North American Large areas in Ukraine, Belarus & Russia were badly contaminated--> evacuation and resettlement of over 336,000 people According to official post-Soviet data~ 60% of the radioactive fallout landed in Belarus

39 Chernobyl, Ukraine The countries of Russia, Ukraine, and Belarus have been burdened with the continuing and substantial decontamination & health care costs of the Chernobyl accident difficult to accurately quantify the number of deaths caused by the events at as the Soviet-era cover-up made it difficult to track down victims

40 Chernobyl, Ukraine Lists incomplete, and Soviet authorities later forbade doctors to cite "radiation" on death certificates The overall cost of the disaster is estimated at US$200 billion

41 Chernobyl, Ukraine World Health Organization (WHO), attributed 56 direct deaths (47 accident workers, and nine children with Thyroid Cancer ~ 4,000 extra cancer deaths among the approximately 600,000 most highly exposed people Chernobyl Exclusion Zone & certain limited areas remain off limits, the majority of affected areas are now considered safe for settlement and economic activity

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49 Chernobyl, Ukraine tourism 23 years later 20 years later

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