Wednesday, June 04, 2008

Camp Lejeune groundwater poisoned Marine Families

We found this article to be quite compelling. There is a distinct connection between this case and our own. See our comment at the end.

Study on Camp Lejeune toxic water continues with Navy money

May 30, 8:11 PM (ET)

By RITA BEAMISH

The Navy agreed Friday to pay for continued government investigation into whether contaminated water harmed the babies of Marines at Camp Lejeune, N.C., after U.S. health officials provided additional details about their work.

"They presented a plan that met the minimum standards for further funding, and the Navy has agreed to make the payment," said Navy spokesman Lt. j.g. Tommy Buck.

The Navy had said it was committed to the study but demanded a "plan of action" to include the schedule, milestones, cost and scope of the 10-year-old study as a condition of providing this year's $1.57 million budget.

In correspondence this month, the Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry, whose experts are conducting the study, said it needed $522,000 by this weekend or it might have to discontinue the project until payment was in hand. Potentially that could mean a year's delay, they said.

After The Associated Press disclosed the correspondence this week, however, agency spokesmen said that the deadline was just a formality and that the health agency planned to continue the project in any event, confident the Navy would pay up.

After Friday's agreement, agency spokesman Jeff Dimond said that working out the budget needs had taken "significant effort" by military and health officials "because of different expectations in accounting systems as well as the complex nature of the scientific projects we are undertaking. Everyone has pulled together and finalized this issue for fiscal year '08."

Before Friday, the Navy had deemed unacceptable the agency's budget and planning information on the complex study.

The money will be processed next week, said Buck.

The study is investigating cancer and birth defects in babies born to women who were pregnant at Camp Lejeune before the bad wells were shut down in the mid-1980s.

Industrial toxins contaminated groundwater for at least 30 years, the investigators have found.

Five months of correspondence between the Navy and health agency revealed a dispute over budget justifications, planning reports and money.

A May 2 letter from Thomas Sinks, the health agency's deputy director for environmental health, noted the Navy had paid nothing since October.

"You are requested to provide full funding of $1,570,409 to ATSDR by June 1, 2008, and not hold these funds contingent upon final resolution of our project and budget tracking differences," he wrote.

The health agency, through its press office this week, characterized the discussions more benignly, calling them routine.

The study outcome is expected to affect claims by more than 1,000 former Camp Lejeune residents seeking nearly $10 billion in damages from the government for health problems they blame on the water. The Navy's Office of the Judge Advocate General is awaiting results of the health study before acting on the claims.

The Marines estimate that 500,000 Camp Lejeune residents may have been exposed to the tainted water, including thousands of Vietnam-bound Marines. Federal health investigators estimate the number is higher.


Link to Article
Here is what the Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry [ATSDR] says about the matter on its website:

"Water from the Tarawa Terrace Treatment Plant was contaminated by PCE (perchloroethylene or tetrachloroethylene). The source of the contamination was the waste disposal practices at ABC One-Hour Cleaners, an off-base dry cleaning firm. The Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry (ATSDR) modeled the contamination and determined that the Tarawa Terrace system had PCE levels that exceeded the current standard of 5 micrograms per liter (μg/L) for 346 months between November 1957 and February 1987. (Note: 1 μg/L of a drinking water contaminant is equivalent to 1 part per billion or ppb) The most contaminated wells were shut down in February 1985.

Water from the Hadnot Point Treatment Plant was contaminated primarily by TCE (trichloroethylene). Other contaminants in the drinking water included DCE (t-1,2-dichloroethylene), PCE and benzene. The system was contaminated by multiple sources: leaking underground storage tanks, industrial area spills, and waste disposal sites. ATSDR is currently modeling the Hadnot Point system."
Well, this was NOT Agent Orange, however, there is a common factor: Benzene. Benzene was dumped in the Camp Lejeune case noted above, and Benzene or Benzene derivatives are an ingredient of Dioxins.

Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry

So we now can see how easily chemical toxins that may be similar to Agent Orange can get into a water supply and their deadly consequences. We also know from the law suit filed by the Government of Vietnam two years ago over the continuing toxicity of many regions of their country due to Agent Orange...which was applied there forty to forty-five years ago.

For more information about the Camp Lejeune Water Toxicity problem visit this website:

The Few, The Proud, The Forgotten


VNVets

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1 comment:

  1. One of the best sites on this subject is http://www.tftptf.com/. If there is already a link to The Few The Proud The Forgotten, I missed it and apologize.

    ReplyDelete