http://www.nearingzero.net (nz158.jpg) I traditionally take Physics 8 to
http://www.nearingzero.net (nz158.jpg) I traditionally take Physics 8 to the cave as a lab. I also invite Physics 6. Its fun! Ill pay for it! Last tour of the day starts at 4:00. Tentatively scheduled for 4:00 Friday, April 23. I may need to change to April 30 if we have a large group. A typical driver can get to the cave from Physics in 35 minutes, if traffic is light. Who wants to go to the cave? Want to
bring a sibling/friend/spouse? Physics 6 Schedule April 12 Times Beach Video April 14 Discuss Video April 19 Alternative
Energy April 21 Global Warming April 26 Student Talks April 28 Student Talks May 3
Student Talks May 5 Student Talks Just because youre paranoid doesnt mean they arent out to get you.Anonymous Your Talks April 26 (4 students) Darryl Coleman Frank Keehn & David
Saunders Courtney Pitts April 28 (10 Students) Kelsey Hansen Lisa Hassler Andrew Lott Alexandra McCormick Melony Meier Sara Mitchell Ally Nissen Elizabeth Rusinko
Suzanne Simpson Christina Wilson The class period is 75 minutes (4:00-5:15). You are allotted 10 minutes if presenting alone, 15 minutes if two are presenting, 20 minutes if three are presenting. If talks end early, I will lecture. Your Talks May 3 (5 students) Sarah Grant Amanda McBee
Fareedah Washington Danielle Warchol Debra Wielms May 5 (5 students) Jazmine Bell D Naya Mims Drew Skyles Josh Smith Not scheduled, or I am not sure what you want to do: Hadeel Bogary, Mykal Cain, Zach Humphrey, Kayla
Richardson The class period is 75 minutes (4:00-5:15). You are allotted 10 minutes if presenting alone, 15 minutes if two are presenting, 20 minutes if three are presenting. If talks end early, I will lecture. Grading Your Talks Tentative grading sheet: environment-related topic (0-3) scientific evidence presented (0-5) effort by presenter to evaluate evidence (0-4) talk organized and flowed logically (0-5)
evidence of thought on part of presenter (0-5) good effort and enthusiasm (0-3) total (0-25) Times Beach, Missouri Any comments on the video? Guess where I went a few years ago? Meramec River
ex-Times Beach remember the protesters along the highway? If I were glowing green when I returned, what would you do? Agent Orange Agent Orange was one of a number of
herbicides sprayed on the Vietnam jungles. Dioxin is one of the man-made byproducts of Agent Orange manufacture, and cannot be removed. Other dioxin sources listed a couple of slides from now. Dioxin
One of the most toxic compounds known to man? Dioxins: TCDD (dioxin) furan pcb There are several hundred compounds in the dioxin family. Perhaps 10-15% of them have dioxin-like toxicity.
Dioxins dont decompose readily. They live for a long time. Remember the food chain. Sources of dioxin: Times Beach dioxin (from Verona, MO?): Agent Orange, facial cleanser production (hexachlorophene). Update, 2010: Dioxin: one of the most toxic compounds known to guinea
pigs. One millionth of a gram can kill a guinea pig. The video suggested dioxin killed horses and birds (birds falling out of the sky) and impaired squirrel jumping ability. Detailed information on effects of dioxin is available from the EPA. See their September 2000 draft documents. Maybe too much information for the average person. 2004 update. Dioxins affects different species in different ways.
Some (guinea pigs) are extremely sensitive. Others not so sensitive. Humans seem to fall in the middle or the sensitivity range. Different people seem to have different sensitivities. According to the FDA, people exposed to dioxin suffer chloracne (really nasty), skin rashes, excessive body hair, possibly liver damage, and increased cancer risk. Long-term exposures to low levels of dioxin, or shortterm exposures during sensitive times, might result in reproductive or developmental defects. Diseases the VA has acknowledged are associated with (but not necessarily caused by) Agent Orange
exposure: chloracne (a skin disorder) porphyria cutanea tarda acute or subacute peripheral neuropathy (a nerve disorder) type 2 diabetes numerous cancers: non-Hodgkins lymphoma, soft tissue sarcoma, Hodgkins disease, multiple myeloma, prostate cancer, and respiratory cancers (including cancers of the lung, larynx, trachea, and bronchus) chronic lymphocytic leukemia being added to list
This alsolist perhaps spinal bifidaitand other birth defects is telling, because is where the government puts its money where its mouth is.
How could we learn about the effects of dioxin exposure on humans? Run a big experiment, and expose volunteers to varying amounts of dioxin? It will always be possible to claim that there is no proof that dioxin is harmful to humans. In my opinion, dioxin is not good stuff for humans, but not the most toxic (to humans) chemical. Do you think the people of Times Beach overreacted to the presence
of dioxin? Would you mind if someone paved the roads of Route 66 State Park with asphalt that contained dioxin? Would you mind if someone paved some Rolla streets with asphalt that contained dioxin? Would you mind if someone paved the street in front of your house with asphalt that contained dioxin? Would you eat a clump of dirt laced with parts per thousand of dioxins? Would it concern you if there were streets within 10 or 15 miles of Rolla that were contaminated with
dioxin? How would you feel if men in moon suits showed up one morning and started digging in your yard? Times Beach, Missouri You can read the town history here, or read an article by the last mayor of Times Beach here. One of Americas legends. Times Beach was founded in 1925 as a result of a newspaper promotion (subscribe to our paper, get a great deal on a vacation lot). The newspaper is now defunct.
Times Beach started out as a summer resort, but turned into a low-income community during the Great Depression. It was a lower middle-class city of about 2200 when it died. According to Marilyn Leistner, on December 23, 1982, the residents received what we now call our Christmas message. If you are in town it is advisable for you to leave and if you are out of town do not go back. Russell Bliss Russell Bliss, the Johnny Appleseed of Dioxin (St.
Louis Post-Dispatch), not to be confused with the 50 or so other Russell Blisses in the US, was a breeder of show horses. He also had a business hauling waste oil. He found that one spraying of oil kept dust down for as long as 6 months. See here.* Naturally, he spread the good word. In 1971 he sprayed dioxin-containing oil on Shenandoah Stables, owned by Judy Piatt. You saw the results. *A student term paper from an industrial chemistry class. Lots of interesting information. I wish he had cited sources. Not available any more.
Bliss told the Piatts the oil was just engine oil, but after the entire family (including children) had to be hospitalized, and horses kept getting sick months later, Piatt started tailing Bliss, noting where he got oil and where he sprayed. 8 years after the Piatt Stables spraying, the EPA finally had to get involved when a former employee of NEPACCO (more later) told them about buried drums containing 1 part dioxin per 500 parts oil. (The safe level was then calculated by the EPA to be 1 part dioxin per 1,000,000,000 parts everything else.)
Your last homework assignment (#13): how many guinea pigs could you kill with a 55-gallon drum that contains 0.2% by weight of dioxin? Just kidding, although it is an interesting question. It wasnt until mid-1982 that the EPA, using Piatts information, started visiting Blisss sites. They picked Times Beach because it had the greatest concentration of people. 1971 spraying. 1982 site visits. You cant accuse the EPA of jumping in willy-nilly, now, can you? Or perhaps it is only hindsight that makes some people wonder
why something wasnt done earlier. Keep in mind that most science problems are really very easyonce somebody has figured out how to solve them. Anyway, men in moon suits showed up in Times Beach one day and started digging in residents yards. But this section is about Russell Bliss. What do you think of Russell Bliss? The St. Louis Post Dispatch calls him a charming rogue, with folksy charm and smooth sales skills.
Heres an interview. Would you buy a used car from Russell Bliss? The Post Dispatch also points out that in the waste oil business of Blisss time, haulers had to pay for oil that was not hazardous. Haulers only got paid if they oil was hazardous. Lets seedid Bliss get paid? Whose idea was it that he get paid? Bliss was never convicted of wrongdoing regarding dioxin, but with all the attention focused on him, the Feds noticed some funny business in his tax returns,
and he ended up spending a year in prison for tax fraud (early 1980s). None of what I am putting in these notes is personal first-hand information. I am trying to credit most of my sources. Most of the information is out there if you keep your ears open. Now for some hearsay. That means the good stuff. When I taught this course in 2001, I had two young ladies in class who knew Bliss personally. They said he had a used-car business somewhere near St. James. They also called himfor the whole class to
heara *****. Can anybody verify that for me? No, the used car bit, not that other piece of information about him. I like this hearsay. Got any more? One of the students in my 2002 Physics 6 class (also a young lady) told me that you could drive some of the back roads the other side of St. James and come across fenced-off, locked roads with hazardous waste signs warning you away. My memory says she claimed the signs contained warnings about dioxin.
Can anybody verify that for me? One more bit of hearsay The next four slides are from Kathy Ks Physics 6 talk, April 28, 2004. My family in the 1980s Lived in Arnold, MO, 20 miles away from Times Beach Owned 5 acres in
a large subdivision that had gravel roads My family in the 1980s In 1984, when the Globe-Democrat folded, we moved to Connecticut High cost of living here, so tried to sell land and house in Arnold. No one would buy it because they feared Times Beach could have affected Arnold too.
Voluntary foreclosure, and a new start Government action Superfund act and nationwide attention When my parents tried to get help from the state and national governments, they were refused.
Ironically, 2 years later, my parents got a call from the bank who originally foreclosed on the property. The bank could not find anyone to buy the land either, and they got tired of wasting their money. They tried to get my parents to buy back the land from them.
A Tangled Web? Some of you have written that companies should be held responsible and made to pay for problems they cause. If you think it over carefully, you might be less willing to hold company owners criminally responsible, except in the most extreme cases. It starts, maybe, in Verona, Missouri. Oh, dang. I drove through
Verona once when I visited a school in Monett. (Took the scenic route.) Am I looking a bit green these days? Northeastern Pharmaceutical and Chemical Company (NEPACCO) in Verona, Missouri, made an antibacterial chemical. Dioxin was a byproduct. It went into contaminated tanks. NEPACCO partnered with Hoffman-Taft, also in Verona,
which made Agent Orange, to share facilities. Dioxin from agent orange production also went into the contaminated tanks. The contaminated byproducts were initially sent to Louisiana for incinerationwhich destroys the dioxin but that was expensive. Agent Orange and the bactericide production were halted in the early 1970s. Shortly after (as far as I can tell), Hoffman-Taft was taken over by Syntex Agribusiness.* Syntex contracted with their chemical supplier, Independent Petrochemical Corporation, IPC, to
dispose of their waste. *Would it make a difference to you if you knew that Syntex is a Mexican company? Remember from the videoIPC got a quarter from Syntex for every (gallon?) and paid Bliss a nickel to haul it away. The real story is a bit more complicated. You can read about it here and here. (2nd link defunct 2010) Now, heres the question: who knew what? A NEPACCO employee knew enough to turn whistleblower in 1979. Supposedly, Syntex never told IPC that their waste
contained dioxin, so IPC couldnt have alerted Bliss. It is not clear that the above statement represents the truth. It has also been claimed that Bliss got waste oil, known to be dioxin contaminated, from a big company in the state, but far from Verona. In fact, Judy Piatt documented Blisss pickups from this company. This company did produce dioxin as a byproduct of their work. (I dont want to name the company.) So heres the big questionwho gets sued? Lots of lawsuits (thousands?). In the end, only Syntex
lost and had to pay (nothing illegal had been done). As far as I can tell, Syntex paid $10 million. The total cost of the Times Beach incident was over $200 million. I wonder who paid the rest? Just because youre paranoid doesnt mean they arent out to get you. A couple of loose ends: The $1.5 million award the video mentioned was for a dioxin-related cancer death having nothing to do with Times Beach. Vernon Houkthe CDC person with the industry
connections who kept defending dioxin I have seen it stated that he claimed chemicals dont harm people. I cant verify that right now from primary sources. I have seen it stated that he led a Federal agency responsible for hundreds of junk science studies used to show various chemicals are not a risk to humans. Houk died in 1994 of cancer of the larynx. The Vernon Houk Award recognizes unsurpassed lea dership in preventing lead poisoning.
In general, accurate, trustworthy information is hard to come by. Rumors and innuendos are abundant. Times Beach: the Aftermath Would you trust this person? He says the dioxin contamination was generally limited to the top twelve inches of soil surrounding roads, road shoulders, and drainage ditches. Approximately 13,600 cubic yards of soil at
concentrations above 20 ppb dioxin as well as 105,000 cubic yards of structures and debris were contaminated. No detectable levels of dioxin were found in the groundwater or surface water at the site. (Link dead 2010; heres an EPA link. An incinerator was built on the site to burn contaminated soil and building materials. Incineration
destroys the dioxin. You hope there are no power failures while incineration is taking place. Such was not the case. The remedial action was demolition and onsite disposal of all structures and debris remaining at the site; excavation of dioxin contaminated soil exceeding 20 ppb and thermal treatment in a
temporary on site thermal treatment unit with onsite disposal of incinerator ash and placing of clean soil cover and revegetation over all areas with residual dioxin levels between 1 and 20 ppb. The incinerator burned about 265,000 tons of contaminated soil and debris from Times Beach and 28 other sites in eastern Missouri. The incineration cost itself was about $110 million (of which Syntex paid $10 million). The Superfund paid much of the cost of cleaning up Times Beach.
According to the EPA, in 2003 there were 791 completed or in-progress Superfund projects. Industry has contributed about 70%-80% of the Superfund money. The Superfund trust fund has gone from $3.8 billion in 1996 to a few tens of millions at the end of FY 2004. Industry used to pay a tax to support the Superfund. That is no longer the case. The US Chamber of Commerce position is that the states should respond to contaminated sites and there should be no reinstatement of the Superfund tax.
The majority of US voters agrees with this position. The American Council of Engineering Companies believes cleanup of contaminated sites should be voluntary. Link to EPA Superfund site: http://www.epa.gov/superfund/ EPA Times Beach site: http://www.epa.gov/history/topics/times/index.htm You are invited to visit Route 66 State Park.
The 419-acre park is a boon to park visitors who want to enjoy nature and see interesting historical displays showcasing Route 66. Bridgehead Inn, a 1935 roadhouse, serves as Route 66 State Park's visitor center. It houses Route 66 memorabilia and interprets the environmental success story of the former resort community of Times Beach, which once thrived on the location of the
park. The park celebrates The environmental success story of the former resort community of Times Beach! A Neverending Story? How would you feel if men in moon suits showed up one morning and started digging in your yard? Dioxin found in Ellisville, 1997. 1998, McDonnell Park, near St. Ann, found contaminated by dioxin.
There are others. The links in this lecture may direct you to them. The Big Joke? Now, are you ready for the punch line to this 48-slide story? Are you sure? Times Beach was not incineratedbecause horses were dying, birds falling out of the sky, and squirrels missing their jumps. It wasnt incinerated because city workers were getting
sick. It wasnt incinerated because residents were suffering chloracne, skin rashes, liver damage, or reproductive or developmental defects. Times Beach was incinerated because the dioxin levels exceeded (just barely) the EPA threshold: enough to cause 1 excess cancer per 1,000,000 population.
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