Tag Archives: Waycross

Fossil fuels are a disaster: literally in WV

300,000 people have their drinking water poisoned by a coal chemical in a disaster declared by a state and the federal government. Do we know what’s in that coal ash coal ash in the Lowndes County landfill? Do we trust a pipeline company with a long list of safety violations to dig into our aquifer?

David Jackson wrote for USA Today yesterday, Obama sends disaster aid to West Virginia,

President Obama is sending federal assistance to West Virginia, where schools and businesses are closed after a chemical spill Thursday into a Charleston river.

“The President today declared an emergency exists in the State of West Virginia and ordered federal aid to supplement state and local response efforts,” said an administration statement on Friday morning.

Under the order, the Department of Homeland Security and Federal Emergency Management Agency will coordinate efforts with local officials.

Kiley Kroh wrote for Thinkprogress yesterday, West Virginia Declares State Of Emergency After Coal Chemical Contaminates Drinking Water, Continue reading

U.S. EPA, GA DNR, GA Health Dept., and landfill in Lowndes County @ EPA 2013-11-14

At the EPA meeting in Waycross about the Seven Out Superfund site, EPA, GA EPD, and state health officials also had information about crossover contamination in Lowndes County.

Matthew J. Huyser, On-Scene Coordinator for U.S. EPA, told me that before EPA shipped those 196,500 gallons of wastewater from Seven Out to the Pecan Row Landfill in Lowndes County they had applied procedures that were supposed to ensure those liquids were no longer toxic and had tested them to be sure. He said he would send me the specifics on that. I didn’t ask him whether CSX toxic wastes were shipped to Lowndes County.

Huyser also said EPA had checked the record of that receiving landfill before sending anything there, and it had a good record. He seemed surprised to learn Continue reading

EPA, GA EPD, and Southeast Health in Waycross about Seven Out Superfund @ EPA 2013-11-14

Now EPA is convinced that the public wants answers, after dozens of citizens turned out to ask questions at Waycross City Hall 14 November 2013. A study of contamination sampling is in peer review, and GA EPD and GA Health Dept. are also involved. Citizens and silentdisaster.org and Satilla Riverkeeper and WWALS Watershed Coalition are watching.

Matthew J. Huyser, EPA (l. standing blue shirt), Jim Brown, GA EPD (c. standing white shirt), Ashby Nix, Satilla Riverkeeper (facing Brown, paper in hand), Joan Martin McNeal, silentdisaster.org (r. in group)

Roger Naylor, Public Relations Director for Southeast Health District, is quite familiar with Janet McMahan’s discovery of arsenic in groundwater and says Continue reading

Meeting with EPA about Seven Out Superfund Site in Waycross 24 Nov 2013

Facebook event by Joan Martin McNeal:

When: Thursday, November 14, 2013 6:30pm
Where: City Hall, 477 Pendleton St., Waycross, GA

Will we get help Or will it be just another story? EPA Meeting Scheduled for Thursday, November 14 at 6:30 PM Waycross City Hall to give us an update on Seven Out Superfund Site. They will also have on hand the Georgia Dept of Health. PLEASE MARK YOUR CALENDAR NOW!

View Larger Map


Spectra Energy fined $15 million for PCB spills at 89 pipeline sites –EPA

Those PHMSA fines weren’t the half of Spectra Energy’s leaks and environmental violations. Do we want a record-EPA-fined pipeline company running PCBs through our counties? Don’t we have enough PCBs in the ADS landfill in Lowndes County that’s in a recharge zone for the aquifer we all drink out of? Haven’t we already imported enough hazardous wastes from the Seven Out Superfund site in Waycross? Maybe the Lowndes County Commission should hear about these things tonight.

L.A. Times, 21 October 1989, Pipeline Firm to Pay Record EPA Fine, Continue reading

Fracking at VSU

It’s good to see fracking reviewed in the VSU Spectator, including that it’s coming to Georgia unless we stop it, and we should stop it. It’s unfortunate the story ends with a bad idea when there’s a much better idea already rapidly being deployed: solar power.

Stephen Cavallaro wrote yesterday for the VSU Spectator, Fracking hits Georgia,

Fracking, the process of harvesting the environmentally unfriendly natural gas called shale that is being pushed by the government, plows its way through Georgia.

More like being pushed by fossil fuel companies who have bought too many politicians.

In March, I discussed a deal backed by the government between British-owned Centrica and American-owned Cheniere. The agreement was that Cheniere would spread toxic chemicals across America in order to fuel millions of British homes.

Kind of like Continue reading

From Seven Out in Waycross to CSX to Pecan Row Landfill in Lowndes County

CSX was involved directly in the Seven Out contamination, storing hazardous water that leaked: and then that water was apparently shipped to the Pecan Row Landfill in Lowndes County. This is in addition to the the CSX trichloroethylene groundwater contamination dating back to 2000 and earlier.

According to a letter from Georgia Department of Natural Resources to BCX, Inc. of 20 July 2004, EPA Identification Number: GAR000030007,

  1. Twenty-seven tanks of wastewater were stored at the facility. Four portable tanks were storing the excess capacity of wastewater next door on property owned by CSX Transportation. These portable 10,000-gallon tanks were not labeled to indicate their contents;
  2. According to a BCX representative, one of the portable 10,000-gallon tanks had a gasket failure on the forward manhole which caused the release of an unknown substance onto the ground at the site owned by CSX Transportation;
  3. Dead vegetation was observed in a 15 feet by 30 feet area downgradient of the tank that caused the release;
  4. A yellowish-green substance was observed on the ground between the portable tank that had the release and another portable tank adjacent to it. There was also dead vegetation observed between these two tanks; and

And GA EPD tested the soil and found something the document doesn’t specify, but whatever it was was enough that: Continue reading

CSX groundwater contamination in Waycross

The MCLG for
is zero.
Around the Seven Out and CSX contamination areas in Waycross more than 100 people have gotten sick or died, most since 2000, with groundwater contamination known since 1985, according to Joan Martin McNeal, So the CSX problem long predates the Seven Out problem. Here’s her map of the CSX property (in yellow) and contamination, sickness, and death:

brown stars: known contamination areas
red markers: confirmed deceased or confirmed cases of severe illness mostly cancer (bone, lung, prostate, blood, colon, breast), some severe neurological disorders, some heart failure, with ages ranging from 4 to 85 years.
green markers: likely early stage cases of such problems

According to this February 2000 tricholoroethylene isopleth map, there was already extensive contamination in the CSX railyard by 2000, extending across an internal drainage ditch that goes into the Waycross Canal that become Tebeau Creek, running through downtown Waycross into the Satilla River.

According to U.S. EPA, Trichloroethylene 79-01-6 Hazard Summary-Created in April 1992; Revised in January 2000, Continue reading

Waste from Superfund site in Waycross went to Lowndes County landfill

What was in that waste water that went into landfill in an aquifer recharge zone, with surface runoff into the Withlacoochee River? The 44 shipments from the toxic waste site in Waycross to the Pecan Row landfill in Lowndes County were “Non RCRA Regulated Liquids”, but “PCBs are not defined as hazardous wastes” and according to the U.S. Department of Energy, “To be a hazardous waste, a material must first be a solid waste.” So “Non RCRA Regulated Liquids” apparently says nothing about hazard or toxicity.

Cover 44 shipments went from the “7 Out Site” to “Pecan Row, Valdosta, GA” for $59,495.00 total of your federal tax dollars paid to Veolia, according to pages 12 and 13 of Final Report, Task Order # F-0032, Seven Out LLC Tank Site, Waycross, Georgia, Contract No. 68S4-02-06 for Emergency and Rapid Response Services, EPA Region 4, Prepared By WRS Infrastructure & Environment, Inc., 5555 Oakbrook Pkwy, Suite 175, Norcross, Georgia 30093, May 2, 2006.

Is this where those PCBs in the landfill came from? EPA itself says, Are polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs) regulated under RCRA as a hazardous waste?

PCBs are not defined as hazardous wastes (Memo, Weddle to Verde; May 18, 1984 (RCRA Online #12235)). However, it is possible that PCBs may be incidental contaminants in listed hazardous waste (e.g., solvent used to remove PCBs from transformers) or may be present in wastes that are characteristically hazardous. In these cases, wastes that otherwise meet a listing criteria or are characteristically hazardous are still subject to RCRA regulation regardless of PCB content.

Pecan Row, Valdosta, GA page 1 However, to avoid duplicative regulation with Toxic Substances Control Act (TSCA), certain PCB containing wastes that exhibit the toxicity characteristic are exempt from regulation under RCRA (Monthly Call Center Report Question; September 1996 (RCRA Online #14014)). Section 261.8 exempts from RCRA Subtitle C regulation PCB-containing dielectric fluid and the electric equipment which holds such fluid if they satisfy two criteria. First, these PCB wastes must be regulated under the TSCA standards of Part 761. Second, only the PCB wastes which exhibit the toxicity characteristic for an organic constituent (waste codes D018-43) may qualify for the exemption (§261.8).

Apparently any liquid wastes from a Superfund site would be “Non RCRA Regulated Liquids”, according to U.S. DoE EH-231-034/0593 (May 1993), Exclusions and Exemptions from RCRA Hazardous Waste Regulation,

Pecan Row, Valdosta, GA page 2
  • any solid or dissolved material introduced by a source into a federally owned treatment work (FOTW) if certain conditions, described in Sect. 108 of the FFCA of 1992, are met;
  • industrial wastewater discharges that are point source discharges regulated under section 402 of the Clean Water Act [§261.4(a)(2)]

If a Superfund site is not a federally owned treatment work, what is? And if the Seven Out site was not an industrial wastewater point source, what is?

Sample waste manifest, Onyx Pecan Row, Valdosta, GA The Onyx Waste Manifests on pages 75-120 say the materials were “Non-Hazardous Non-Regulated Waste water”. (Onyx became Veolia Environmental Services in 2005, according to Veolia.) As we’ve seen, “Non-Regulated” apparently means little. We don’t know what was in that waste water that went into a landfill in a recharge zone for the Floridan Aquifer, the source of our drinking water, and with surface runoff into the Withlacoochee River.


Aquifer recharge and drainage from Seven Out Superfund site, Mary Street, Waycross, GA

The Seven Out Superfund site is not in any of the severe aquifer recharge zones in Ware County, fortunately, but drainage from it goes right across Waycross into the Satilla River, carrying who-knows-what pollution with it. It’s time to find out what pollution, where it comes from, and what plume of toxic chemicals it is making underground. Continue reading