EPA Extends Public Comment Period on Hudson Review

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency released for public comment its second review of the cleanup of PCB-contaminated sediment from the upper Hudson River on June 1.

The agency is now extending the public comment period on the Proposed Second Five-Year Review Report for the Hudson River PCBs Superfund site, which was originally set to end on June 30, to a new deadline of September 1, 2017.

This extension is being made in response to requests from several parties, EPA said in its release.

Two public information meetings in Poughkeepsie and Saratoga Springs have been scheduled during the public comment period.

At the meetings, set for June 28 and July 19, EPA will discuss the purpose, scope and findings of the five-year review and answer questions from the public.

EPA’s second five-year review

The EPA review concludes that the Hudson River cleanup is working as designed and, while not yet protective, is expected to accomplish its long-term goal of protection of human health and the environment when the cleanup is completed.

EPA’s second five-year review is the culmination of an eleven-month evaluation process which included collecting new data, conducting an objective analysis of project activities and a quantitative analysis of all available fish, water and sediment data.

The more than 1000-page report includes a detailed technical assessment and various technical data evaluations as appendices. The five-year review acknowledges that as many as eight or more years of post-dredging fish data may be needed to establish, with a high degree of confidence, a long-term statistical trend in levels of PCBs in the fish.

The EPA’s two-part cleanup plan called for the targeted environmental dredging of approximately 2.65 million cubic yards of PCB-contaminated sediment from a 40-mile stretch of the Upper Hudson River between Fort Edward and Troy, NY, followed by a period of monitored natural recovery.

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