Why do officials wait SO long to study Ten Mile Creek? I am glad that studies are NOW beginning to happen. However, it was a year ago that high levels of radioactivity were found at these study sites. And it was in 2013 that water in Indiana, PA was found to have 200 times the allowable amount of radium-26 in it. Duh? This stuff has a half-life of 1600 years. What does that mean? It will be ONE HALF as volatile in 1600 years as it is today.
SO. WHY WAIT? WHY allow people to drink the water or swim or fish?
The news report on Ten Mile Creek said it was called into question because the Isaak Walton League badgered the agency because it has been stocking the area with fish for sportsmen and women for years. Interesting AND UPSETTING that the DEP in PA is ONLY planning to conduct studies ON or IN the waters about which the environmental watchdog group complained. Tell me. Is this good thinking? I think NOT.
Serious discussion has been underway about whether this is a new development from ACID MINE DRAINAGE. However, bromides and radium have NOT been found in studies of those locations in the past. Hmm.
Bromide sounds fairly harmless but when it gets into a water treatment plant where chlorine is added to drinking water we see dreadful results of synergy. Dangerous chemicals are formed when bromides and chlorine combine. Why did we NOT know this? OR Prevent this?
Do not dare to ask what next!
It seems that according to this AP report, bromides and radium can be released from OLD WELL CASINGS(also reported yesterday on NPR). Plus when pushed under pressure from hydraulic fracturing(FRACKING) these chemicals can AND DO appear in tributaries and in wells. This region is sitting on a powder keg of synergistic chemicals in unknown amounts, with unidentified sources and unknown consequences.
Way back in the 1970’s “radical” environmentalists warned about what might be down the road in terms of pollution. No longer do we face single or individual elements at a time. We must consider how they combine with other chemicals in the air and water.
For instance, once source of ACID RAIN is happens naturally when water (H2O) combines with hydrogen sulfate(H2SO4) in the atmosphere. Remember all of those horror stories of rapid corrosion of limestone monuments, of holes in nylon stockings and umbrellas, of burns on tree leaves? Maple trees in New England were hit hard because there is little limestone in their soil to buffer the impact. Even today, as I walk in the forests of western Pennsylvania, I can see acid rain burns on tree and shrub leaves. Sadly, even when I lived in the desert, I saw them on milkweed leaves as a consequence of air pollution from the Los Angeles area.
But, my focus needs to be on WATER today. And on the studies underway at Ten Mile Creek along the Monongahela River. We all wait eagerly for the cautiously worded reports from these studies. Meanwhile, all around the region FRACKING continues. Even the CEO of EXXON does not want to permit FRACKING near his home because it is a threat to the health of his children and the community.
So, for the sake of short-term gain, we jeopardize our future once again. If you have a stream nearby, check it out and see if anyone is analyzing it. If not, bring it to the attention of DEP. They will only study streams that have been brought to their attention. Like Ten Mile Creek.
See an earlier post on related topics. Related on THIS SITE.