Saturday, December 06, 2008
Virgin Mary in Fort Pierce woman's brain scan; next stop: eBay
Found this in my 'dioxin feed.'
Poor lady! Another of her claims to fame has to do with how dioxin screwed up her health! Just goes to show, there can be humor even in the worst of situations. Hey! She's making lemonade outta lemons, isn't she? Now, what is she selling on eBay... the picture or the brain???
Thursday, November 06, 2008
The next quarterly Midland/Saginaw/Bay City (Tri-Cities) Dioxin Community Meeting will be held at 6:30 p.m. on Thursday, November 6, 2008, at the Horizons Conference Center, 6200 State Street, Saginaw. The press release and agenda for the meeting are available at:
Similar to the meeting held on August 7, 2008, this meeting will also feature several open house stations for one-on-one or small group discussion of topics of interest with meeting presenters along with other agency and Dow representatives for one-half hour after the formal portion of the meeting.
Supporting materials are available at the following location: http://www.michigan.gov/deq/0,1607,7-135-3312_4118_4240-53424--,00.html
Please share this notice with others who might be interested in attending this meeting or forward their e-mail addresses to me for inclusion on the distribution list. If you should have any questions, please contact me.
Cheryl HoweEnvironmental Engineering SpecialistHazardous Waste Management UnitHazardous Waste Section 517-373-9881/517-373-4797 Fax Waste and Hazardous Materials DivisionMichigan Department of Environmental Quality
P.O. Box 30241, Lansing, MI 48909-7741 Overnight Mail/Street Address:Constitution Hall, Atrium North, 525 West Allegan Street, Lansing, MI 48933
Thursday, July 31, 2008
Similar to the meeting held on May 7, 2008, this meeting will also feature several open house stations for one-on-one or small group discussion of topics of interest with meeting presenters and agency representatives for one-half hour after the formal portion of the meeting.
Supporting materials are available at the following location: http://www.michigan.gov/deq/0,1607,7-135-3312_4118_4240-53424--,00.html
Please share this notice with others who might be interested in attending this meeting.
Environmental Engineering Specialist
Hazardous Waste Management Unit
Hazardous Waste Section
Waste and Hazardous Materials Division
Michigan Department of Environmental Quality
Dioxin Meeting: August 7
Still keeping busy & living well along the Tittabawassee River floodplain.
Still think if you're in fear of the dioxin in my neck of the woods, you're living with fear for no good reason.
Still healthy... thanks to God & good genes!
Tuesday, May 06, 2008
Excerpt from the official MDEQ notice as published online at http://www.michigan.gov/deq/0,1607,7-135--191316--,00.html
'May 7 Community Meeting on Dow Corrective Action Work Contact: Robert McCann (517) 241-7397
Agency: Environmental Quality
May 5, 2008
The next quarterly Midland/Saginaw/Bay City (Tri-Cities) Dioxin Community Meeting will be held on Wednesday, May 7, at the Horizons Conference Center, 6200 State Street, Saginaw. The meeting is open to the public and will run from 6:30 p.m. to 9:00 p.m. Staff from the DEQ, Department of Community Health, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, Dow, with their consultants, and the Natural Resource Damage Assessment Trustees will be available one-half hour before the meeting and one-half hour after the formal portion of the meeting at open house stations for individual discussion with the public. Maps and other handout materials will be available for viewing and discussion. '
You will find the agenda here: http://www.michigan.gov/documents/deq/deq-whm-hwp-dow-05-07-2008-CommMeeting-Final-Agenda_233338_7.pdf
Tuesday, April 22, 2008
- 24 foot 1997 Riviera Cruiser
- Has privacy curtain for port-a-potty/changing clothes.
- 40 hp Force outboard motor
- Elete trailer
- $8,500 for boat and trailer
- Respond to: firstname.lastname@example.org and use Subject: 24 foot Riviera Cruiser
Tuesday, March 18, 2008
Golly, ya think?
Monday, March 17, 2008
An FYI to the local environutz who are out to create even less jobs in the tri-city area and kick chemical industry butt, I have cared about the Great Lakes and especially the Saginaw Bay when many of you were still wearing diapers! My family have been boaters since the 1960s. Industry began creating non-phosphate cleaners way back then. We always made sure our cleaning products, dish soaps, etc. for use when we were boating contained no phosphates!!!
NOW... just want to share a 2004 photo album I created showing the Bay City State Park in mid-summer. All the other State Parks were already buzzing with activity. Here's the album: Beach
Here is the editorial for anybody who might not have read it:
Make 2008 the year we saved Saginaw Bay
Sunday, March 16, 2008
Saginaw Bay is sick.
Rotting muck has ruined sandy beaches.
Human fecal matter - yes, that! - and animal waste are in that mess.
Invasive phragmites are taking over our shorelines.
Accidentally imported animals are remaking our native waters into ecosystems we don't recognize.
Yet the Michigan Department of Environmental Quality didn't even list Saginaw Bay in the first draft of its ''impaired waters'' report this year.
The bay needs action, now.
It demands a comprehensive plan.
Yet, we see no outrage.
Where, for example, are the environmentalists?
Lately, they seem more attuned to chemicals in the bay than they are to what rots and stinks up the place.
Refocus, you guys and gals: We need your dedication and experience.
The few steps taken to turn the bay around are commendable. The Bay County Board of Commissioners has enacted a ban on phosphates in lawn fertilizers to stop the growth of algae that dies to become muck. The bay needs more help than that.
In the past year alone, municipal wastewater treatment plants in Saginaw, Saginaw Township, Bay City and Essexville dumped 388 million gallons of only partially treated sewage into the Saginaw River. That's enough to fill 456 Olympic-size swimming pools.
Shrugs all around. What can we do?
Stop it, that's what.
Build more retention basins used to hold combined sanitary sewage and storm runoff. Or separate sanitary sewage from storm water.
Yes, it will cost millions of dollars, even billions. The work will take years.
So we better start now.
Nobody knows how many rural homes and cabins send their raw sewage downstream through failed septic systems.
Nobody has looked in any comprehensive way.
Find them and fix them. Take the Bay County ban on phosphates in fertilizer to all 22 counties in our watershed. Ban phosphates in
When people became enraged about industrial pollutants, laws were written and the offenders were found and fined. That pollution stopped.
The same outcry and the same, strong government response is needed to stop the biological poisoning of Saginaw Bay.
The work won't end once we get a grip on wastewater and runoff.
What do we do about zebra mussels?
Nobody knows, because little is known about the tiny bivalves that took over the bay more than 18 years ago.
Even less is known about the other invaders.
Study continues at the pace of a snail.
Ramp it up, and find solutions.
Get angry, get involved and get that bay of ours clean.
We will not be ignored if we stand as a region.
Determined that, together, we will cure our sick Saginaw Bay.
Starting this year.
Tuesday, March 11, 2008
Here is the latest letter to Saginaw News Editor on the subject... well said, sir!
Dow Chemical doing all it can
Monday, March 10, 2008
Editor, The News:
I have followed the dioxin case like most in the area for a couple of years now. An expert I am not, but one thing strikes me as being wrong and unfair about this whole episode.
It's the attacks some of the most extreme environmental activists make upon Dow Chemical Co. Have you ever heard one positive word about Dow from these people? Do they ever give Dow any credit for trying to find a solution to this problem that all can live with that won't bankrupt the company? Many big corporations would never go as far as Dow has trying to satisfy all the parties involved in this complex case.
I have a question for them: Is your goal really to find a solution that all can live with, or do you really want to hurt Dow financially and cost them as much money as possible? Costing Dow as much money as possible not only hurts the company, it hurts its employees, stockholders, suppliers, the community at large and possibly even its retirees.
Dow has done more for the surrounding communities than most corporations would ever think of doing. Drive around and look at the various community bettering things Dow has played a part in or been a supporter of. Dow Gardens, Midland Center for the Arts, Northwood University, TheDow Event Center, Bay City Y, MBS International Airport and Delta College are a few. There would not be a Dow Diamond and minor league team in our area without the support of Dow Chemical.
We should appreciate the investment Dow has made in our community, and the investments they are involved in at Hemlock Semiconductor, Dow Medical in Hemlock, Dow Corning and the new buildings scheduled for the Dow Midland plant. These all equal more jobs for our area.
Dow isn't perfect, but it is a far better corporate citizen than some give it credit for. We should be working with Dow instead of against it.
Saturday, March 08, 2008
C'mon, just clean it up
Tuesday, March 04, 2008
Any of you out there trying to keep up with the Dow Chemical Co. dioxin cleanup have permission to roll your eyes from here to Love Canal.
Dow, the state Department of Environmental Quality and the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency have hammered away at each other so hard and for so long they finally have succeeded in making it anyone's guess as to just what's going on.
In the latest episode, last week Dow decided to take the DEQ to court, saying the government agency ''out of thin air'' and without any warning or discussions, significantly increased the scope of the company's dioxin testing plan to include part of Lake Huron. The DEQ says no way. The plan includes some of Saginaw Bay, but not the lake.
Dow wants the court to quash the DEQ-modified plan and start over from scratch.
The relationship between Dow and the DEQ and its overseer, the EPA, has disintegrated into combativeness at the very least, with disagreement at every turn.
Dow says a Wickes Park dioxin discovery last year posed no immediate health risk and cited a University of Michigan study as proof. The EPA called the site the most contaminated ever recorded and the DEQ said the danger was ''beyond the realm of debate.''
Last June, the EPA took center stage, muscling the DEQ out of its way and telling Dow and the DEQ to get a move on with the cleanup of three Tittabawassee River dioxin hot spots. Six months later it quit talks with Dow. No one knows why because both Dow and the EPA agreed not to tell anyone.
Hang in there, folks. There's more.
Last month, Dow decided it wouldn't co-host with the DEQ a regular community dioxin meeting because there was nothing new to add since the last session. The EPA said it would co-host, but a snowstorm kept representatives in Chicago. The DEQ carried on alone.
And now the court action. Dow said it contacted the DEQ to try and settle differences before resorting to litigation. The DEQ said yes, Dow called, but only to say it was filing the lawsuit.
Dow must clean up this 100-year-old mess to the extent science and the risk of making things worse by stirring it up allow.
The environmental agencies must allow sensible conditions that make it possible for the chemical company's executives to put this disruptive and divisive impediment to progress behind us and still protect the health of our people.
Dow's image and its ability to harvest the fruits of its investment in the Tri-Counties region are at stake.
So too are the reputations of the EPA and DEQ.
Sometime, somewhere, somehow this trio has to make peace.
Why not now?
Wednesday, March 05, 2008
In a nutshell, the editor... no byline but presume maybe the Editorial Page Editor, Robert H. Handeyside..... sums up the ongoing saga with a few simple words. He sees what we're all seeing - that state and national bureaucrats appear to be changing the rules over and over again. Well duh!!!
You know what I think? Nobody wants to make any big decisions until they know which way the political machine will blow next year!
Saturday, March 01, 2008
Clearing river will take combined efforts
Friday, February 29, 2008
KENNETH B. HORN, GUEST COLUMNIST
If we learned nothing else in 2007, it's that we should work side by side in a nonpolitical way to get things done for our community. However, in recent weeks I've repeatedly been bemused by frequent letters to the editor from defenders of the Environmental Protection Agency sit-down strike, most recently on Feb. 15.
Letters of the defense speak of this federal agency quitting discussions after an ''unacceptable offer'' by a local company. It is remarkable that EPA supporters are so intimate with the confidential dioxin negotiations. The offer, whatever it was, remains unknown to all residents of Michigan with the obvious exception, of course, of these select few champions of the EPA's environmental monarchy.
For the record, and to the chagrin of some extremists, readers should recall that my office did not have the Department of Environmental Quality removed from the river project. The EPA muscled in after years of DEQ involvement and unilaterally chose to yank our state agency out of the loop. An uninformed EPA then leaked information about the case and is currently under investigation by the U.S. inspector general. Rather coincidentally, and nearly the same day, the EPA walked away from the clean-up talks and halted its vaunted river projects. If you are not aware of this yet, at a recent gathering the EPA demonstrated satisfaction in a couple of clean-ups along our river. Here's what they accomplished at just one site: More than 300 majestic 100-year-old oak trees were ripped from the ground, root and limb, and hundreds of thousands of cubic yards of our riverbanks were carted away and replaced with sterile soil, likely to be washed away as silt next spring.
I toured the site and could not believe the government sanctioned the destruction I witnessed. The EPA insipidly referred to this thoughtless obliteration simply as the ''removal of vegetation.''
Guess what they found? With this show of unbridled brute force, the EPA recovered less than a thimbleful of non-toxic furans. Doubt it? The EPA cannot tell the difference between the furans and dioxins in the river -- it said so. Worst of all, it scorns both the world-renowned University of Michigan and Michigan State University studies on the effects of human and wildlife eco-systems in our region.
I remember when several trees wrongly were chopped down by the Road Commission in Saginaw Township not too long ago. The neighbors were so outraged over the destruction of their trees that their voices quivered in anger. We should be equally incensed over the EPA's hard-handed tactics because if you live on the river, prepare yourself, your trees are next on the EPA chopping block. It's their bold plan. It's what they call ''progress.''
That is why I'm fighting the EPA and the DEQ.
I strongly support the health and safety of our residents. Without a moment of hesitation, I encourage honest efforts to clean up our rivers. In light of all that we know through the U-M and MSU studies, I support doing this in a way that does the least damage to our extraordinary surroundings.
There should be a reasonable plan that includes green spaces, new plantings, some river digging and lots of rip-rap to keep banks from eroding. The DEQ and the EPA need to work candidly with the community to develop a vision and share it with the public. Government needs to get back to the table and then work toward that vision. It seems only reasonable, if they're the experts.
So, while we wait on their expertise, please check out this quote:
"What happens next is anyone's guess. Hopefully EPA and DEQ will continue to work together to resolve this long-standing issue. It is imperative for the agencies to now come forward with a collective and coherent strategy and engage the public. What are your next steps Director Chester and Administrator Gade? Please do not assume we know." The Dioxin Update, Lone Tree Council.
Apparently, I am not the only one disappointed in the bureaucracy of this project. As a legislator, a big part of my job is to watch over departmental operations. This problem needs to come to some resolution. I consider myself a conservationist and will join with ecologists to solve this logjam. My only caveat is that we will not destroy this river valley environment in the name of saving it. The cure should not be worse than the illness.
I'd like to thank the advocates of the EPA for writing their letters to the editor, though you should know that your neighbors likely are disappointed in the condescending tone. It shouldn't be that only those ''in the pocket'' of the EPA are allowed to pursue accountability and transparency in government.
Just as we need to work in a bipartisan manner in Lansing, we need to work together locally. I will continue to represent the people of the 94th District and will stand up for our precious river forest. And I will fight against out-of-control, politically motivated bureaucracies that are funded by tax dollars, paid for by you and me.
As always, you are welcome to write me directly at email@example.com or call me at (866) horn-094 (1-866-467-6094). I'd be glad to chat with you about these issues.
Kenneth B. Horn represents Michigan's 94th state House district. He lives in Frankenmuth.
Wednesday, February 27, 2008
From The Saginaw News
Saturday, February 25, 2008
Adjust dioxin studies, clean-up
Editor, The News:
I chose not to attend the Dec. 7 Department of Environmental Quality/Dow Chemical Co. meeting. I was still disappointed with the Environmental Protection Agency from last fall's meeting when the representative was asked by University of Michigan's Dr. Garabrant if they had read his research regarding dioxin/furan exposure in the Tittabawassee River. The reply was ''no'' and therefore not incorporated into their moving-forward plans.
When I heard the EPA had ended discussions with Dow, I was bewildered. Why would discussions be terminated at this stage? Even if the EPA and Dow don't agree with what should be done, negotiations cannot take place if there is no communication. Residents, no matter what side of the issue, want communication between the EPA, DEQ and Dow.
Dow did not participate in the Feb. 7 meeting due to lack of new information. The EPA did not come because of the weather, which is understandable. That left the DEQ. I was happy to read that the DEQ wants to move ahead with less invasive procedures than what we saw last fall. They, too, must have been shocked when they saw the land stripped of trees and vegetation. True, it grows back, but in the meantime it upsets the natural balance of wildlife. There's also the question of whether dioxins and furans are more of a danger by being exposed rather than staying buried.
I've attended these meetings since they started. I still have not heard evidence of dioxins or furans getting into anyone's bloodstream as a result of the Tittabawassee flooding or from activities on the river. Nor have I heard of someone being ill as a result of exposure to the river. While I feel bad for anyone who is ill, and I understand the need to be able to determine the cause, it seems premature to blame the dioxins and furans.
Until there is factual data showing that the Tittabawassee is harming residents, the DEQ needs to remove the facility designation. Dow must continue to clean ''hotspots'' that have consistently tested high. The community needs to be more careful with our land and water as we move forward.
And, our legislators must review the new research and the 90 parts per trillion level and make adjustments if supported. Just like other areas in our lives, we revise how we do things as we grow older because we learn new and better ways based on past experience and new findings.
Tuesday, February 26, 2008
By Tony Lascari
The Dow Chemical Co. is appealing a plan for dioxin cleanup that it says extends past the Saginaw Bay into Lake Huron.
The company is required by the state to investigate contamination in the Saginaw River and Saginaw Bay, but not Lake Huron, Dow spokesman John Musser said.
The company appealed modifications to its latest scope of work document made by Michigan Department of Environmental Quality, mainly because the changes add about 300 square miles to be tested in Lake Huron, Musser said.
The Michigan Department of Environmental Quality said that Dow's assertion is "absolutely wrong."
"We're not making them go out there because we already have samples that show we don't have contamination out there," MDEQ spokesman Bob McCann said.
Dow might be confusing sampling done previously in Lake Huron, McCann said. He said the state is only requiring investigation to show where the contamination went to that came from Dow's property.
Musser said the company has worked on substantial cleanup in the Tittabawassee River and is prepared to do remedial cleanup actions in the first six miles of the Saginaw River if necessary. Dow completed some sampling in 2007 to get ahead on finding solutions to the contamination, Musser said.
Beyond that stretch of the river, Dow hoped to take a more restorative approach to the work. Musser said the company is not the only contributor to contamination of the Saginaw River and should not be solely responsible for its cleanup.
When the MDEQ approved the scope of work plan, it added modifications that go beyond what legitimately would be called the Saginaw Bay, Musser said.
"As it turns out the modifications are just not acceptable," he said. "The modifications were unilaterally made and beyond the scope of DEQ's legal authority."
Musser said about 300 square miles of Lake Huron were added to the required sampling area, which would go beyond the state's authority to require Dow to investigate Saginaw Bay.
"The modifications would require Dow to take on an endless and pointless series of studies which will clearly distract from the important work we thought ought to be addressed and what the public really cares about," Musser said. "What they're putting out here is that there's no real end in sight in what they expect us to do."
That's why Dow filed an appeal to the plan on Thursday.
"Our hope would be that the result of this would be for DEQ to withdraw the modified scope of work and for us to get back together and look at the data that is there and the data that's coming March 1, and make our decisions based on that," Musser said.
"Hopefully it's something we can work through and put behind us quickly so important work isn't delayed," McCann said, adding he thinks the issue is simply a matter of misunderstanding.
©Midland Daily News 2008
Saturday, February 09, 2008
After listening to a very sanctimonious presentation concerning corporate responsibility in the area of environmental cleanup, the EPA leaves one wondering. In the face of scientists who pioneered dioxin research, and refute the so-called dangers in the area of dioxin, the EPA and MDEQ continue in their quest to force cleanup in our area. Even though evidence is abundantly available that dioxin has never harmed any population, and there is no scientific proof to the contrary.
We are still subject to the bureaucratic mindset. It was very sad to listen to the biased presentation of a Mr. Dollhopf from the EPA, but stereotypical when considering EPA's past comments. While The Dow Chemical Co. has been forthright in their efforts to supply cleanup monies and data concerning this subject, they still have an obligation to not throw money away needlessly. This concept does not connect with the EPA. It has to be very frustrating for Dow to continue this process when the EPA has inserted a moving target for them to complete the cleanup issue.
We have generated an enormous amount of undeniable, statistically sound scientific data that proves dioxin is not entering the human system through dust or soil. The U of M human blood serum study is irrefutable in this area. The MSU wildlife study proves that our ecosystem is healthy and vibrant. This is contrary to the outdated information the EPA and MDEQ use in their extrapolations to determine cleanup numbers. Why are the EPA and MDEQ so reluctant to embrace this data and use it? Our area is suffering from the effects of dioxin but it is not from health issues. It is the continuing diatribe we hear from the EPA and MDEQ that is harming us economically while disparaging the image of our community.
While I support the EPA in all other areas, I feel they should revisit their efforts in the dioxin area. Their continuing push in this area has the potential to alienate our largest employer to the point that the pubic stands to suffer greatly. A corporate expansion, freeze or downsizing would not be out of the question when facing the irresponsible demands the EPA and MDEQ have put upon them. When the cure outweighs the benefits of an issue, then it is time for listening and caution before moving forward.
Leonard Heinzman Freeland
Saturday, February 02, 2008
I mow the lawn here - a whole acre. I still have asparagus we planted when we moved here 50 years ago. We had vegetable gardens for several years when my children were young..... and yes, this is also where our girls had their playground equipment.
Then... in the new millenium, a few environutz from a neighboring community started denigrating our property, saying it was contaminated by the big bad chemical company. They found a greedy few willing to sue Dow claiming their property is worthless because of the contamination.
In late 2003 or early 2004 I read in the newspapers that these Lonetree Council recruits were trying to sue Dow Chemical in a class action suit. This is the same bunch of weirdos that later told me to 'shut up' at a public meeting in June 2005! I guess they believe in freedom of speech for anybody who agrees with them.
These environutz DO NOT represent me nor my neighbors, many of whom have lived here even longer than I. We are the Tittabawassee River Voice and we are tired of special interest groups and bureaucrats defiling the environment along our river.
We DO NOT want to sue Dow. We want MDEQ and EPA to get out of our backyards! We want the environutz and bureaucrats to allow Dow Chemical to clean up their own mess!
Friday, February 01, 2008
It all started with a paper spitball blown across the room in a high school. That spitball resulted in an accusation by a Pakistani that one of my grandsons committed ethnic intimidation. The entire story is surreal, including police brutality and a misinformed district attorney.
My husband & I spent most of 2003 driving across the state to show our support. Some court appearances were cancelled without notice. We were convinced the delays were calculated for my grandson to plead guilty to something of which he was innocent.
Bottom line: In desperation my daughter sent a letter to her State Representative and I sent a letter to mine, explaining the problem. An assistant noted on my letter the incident was not within his district so he could do nothing. Wrong!
Rep. Moolenaar read my letter and responded that he would try to help. Finally our trial was not delayed again. The grandson was found not guilty.
Representative John Moolenaar may not even remember who I am but I will always remember him! He is my hero. His thoughtfulness taught me that there is such a thing as an honest politician.
Now the Lonetree Council and their little group of litigants in the dioxin case started catching my attention. They did not represent me and I knew most of my Freeland neighbors felt the same. I made noise at some of the Dow informational meetings... I started this blog... and I met Leonard & Cheryl Heinzman... kindred souls. They kicked things into high gear and the Tittabawassee River had a Voice.