The following is Dr. Aubrey J. Serewicz’s response to the Guest View published in the Daily Chronicle from Dale Hoekstra, Director of Operations at Waste Management
Waste Management and its Director have no shame! Dale Hoekstra, who in sworn testimony, says he has no knowledge of how hydrogen sulfide behaves and has no chemical background is lecturing concerned citizens as hysteric about measured data. Further, he belittles our intelligence to claim it is all over Dekalb County, but not at the landfill. The company’s statement shows a lack of integrity bordering on falsehood.
1. They testified H2S can be smelled at .001 ppm and it’s odd at 80 times that concentration no one at Cortland School noticed the odor.
2. Methane was not detected because it is many times lighter than air, rising like a helium balloon. H2S is heavier than air and hugs the ground, collecting at night until blown around.
3. The distance from the Cortland School playground to the fence line of the landfill is 1352 feet, ¼ mile. Not ½ mile or 1 mile as claimed in other Chronicle articles.
4. Air does neutralize H2S but it takes 14 hours. It only takes 3 minutes for a pocket of H2S to travel from the 110 foot peak of the fill down to Cortland School.
5. OSHA, the workplace limit, is the law for mature adults and its high limit is all that the company follows. NIOSH, its advisory agency, with lower limits and shorter time is ignored. The CDC with its limit at .030 and some 20 other states with this lower limit is also ignored. They ignore the progress of health science and claim concern of neighbors.
6. At lower concentration the obvious symptoms are lethargy and confusion. As a result in the month of February 2010, alone, 4 landfill workers in the US have been killed at landfills, run over by equipment. They were apparently confused.
Yes, there is fear, but it is Waste Management that fears. It fears real data and real science. The toxicity regulation of H2S was held back by the EPA from enforcement for 16 years until April 27, 2010. At the University of Illinois, Urbana, 3 Schools, covering 5 Departments, have published a report in 2007 showing that H2S is a Genotoxic material. They cite 48 other confirming papers. This is real science. Let us take heed before it is too late.
Dr. Aubrey J. Serewicz
Click Here To Submit A News Tip Or Story