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AP Environmental Science- Love Canal
Transcript of AP Environmental Science- Love Canal
Some areas ban disposal of certain chemicals in land fills
Super Fund Laws (removed from Superfund in 2004)
"Cradle to Grave regulations"
Part of the debate in hydraulic fracking Government Intervention August 7th 1978-October 1, 1980: Evacuation of families and cleanup
September 1988, Department of Health declares area inhabitable
April 1, 1990, Community leaders from across the state and nation came together to protest resettlement
August 15, 1990, Love Canal Revitalization Agency announces resettlement Love Canal was initially built when William T. Love wanted to build a canal connecting the Niagara River with Lake Ontario to generate hydroelectricity. However, his plan demanded an abrupt alternative when the Panic of 1893 caused investors to drop their funding. In addition, congress had just passed legislation to preserve Niagara Falls by barring the removal of water from the Niagara River. Love then envisioned what he called a "Model City", which would entail an urban community of parks and homes surrounding a canal with a shipping line that would eventually reach Lake Ontario, bypassing Niagara Falls. His project started in 1894 but was abandoned in 1896 when his personal funds were depleted. The approximately 50 ft. wide and 40 ft. deep hole was used for swimming until the 1920's. LOVE CANAL Disposed Chemicals Chemicals Found Ethyl benzene
suppresses bone marrow function
depresses the central nervous system
causes headaches & sleepiness
prolonged exposure may cause leukemia Trichlorophenol (TCP):
Irritates eyes, lungs, nose, & pharynx
Burns skin & produces redness
Causes edema Nitrobenzoic Acid
disturbs respiratory & digestive tracts
causes eye & skin irritation Diamino Diphenyl Methane (DDM)
Causes skin, eye, and respiratory irritation
Causes yellow discoloration of skin & nails
Prolonged exposure increases risk of cancer of the bladder & cancer of the large intestine Sources: Whalen, Robert P. "Love Canal- Public Health Time Bomb." Department of Heath. Environmental Protection Agency , 2 Aug. 1978. Web. 20 Jan. 2013. <http://www.health.ny.gov/environmental/investigations/love_canal/lctimbmb.htm>.
Beck, Eckhardt C. "The Love Canal Tradgedy ." U.S. EPA. Environmental Protection Agency, Jan. 1979. Web. 25 Jan. 2013. <http://www.epa.gov/history/topics/lovecanal/01.html>.
Fabian, Carol A. "Love Canal Collections." UB Libraries . University at Buffalo, Aug. 1988. Web. 28 Jan. 2013. <http://library.buffalo.edu/specialcollections/lovecanal/about/background.php>.
DePalma, Anthony , and David Stabb. "Love Canal Declared Clean, Ending Toxic Horror ." The New York Times, 18 Mar. 2004. Web. 29 Jan. 2013. <http://www.nytimes.com/2004/03/18/nyregion/love-canal-declared-clean-ending-toxic-horror.html>. Chloroform:
Produces an anesthetic effect & cardiovascular depression
Causes hallucinations & moodiness
Causes redness & twitching of the eyes Polychlorinated Biphenyls (PCB)
Disrupts thyroid levels
Increases risk of liver disease & diabetes
Causes skin irritation & rashes Tuolene
Causes inability to control muscles
May cause permanent brain damage
Causes speech, hearing, and vision loss Methylene Chloride
decreases visual, auditory, and motor functions
Causes depression, nausea, & memory loss
Irritates nose & throat Beginning in the 1920's, the hole became a chemical and municipal disposal site for several companies in the city. In 1953, the Hooker Chemical Company covered the waste site with soil and sold the land to the city for only $1. By the late 50's, a school and approximately 200 homes were built surrounding the old canal. Triggered by a high amount of rainfall, Love Canal exploded and the leaching of 20,000 tons of chemical waste began. 421 different chemicals were found in soil, water, and air samples in studies conducted by the Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry. Cleanup cost 199 million dollars (Occidental forced to pay 129 million, 28 of which was interest to the federal government and 98 million to the state government)
the State budgeted $1.2 million support program, including $1 million in State aid for a five-year graduated property tax relief program and $200,000 for psychological counseling
20 million on relocation of families
some 635 million in lawsuits Health impacts 75% of families included in this study
300% increase in miscarriages
56% of newborns had some sort of birth defect
6 times more likely to have a nervous breakdown leading to suicide attempts or admission to a mental hospital
300% increase in urinary tract disorders
doesn't even account for the worst families who were evacuated immediately