toxic sites

Public Meeting on Proposed School Across From Toxic Site Tomorrow (2/7)

The planned development by All Year Management at the NuHart site (known as 22-26 Clay St.)

NYC Councilmember Stephen Levin is holding a public meeting regarding the proposed k-8 school across from the Nuhart Plastics Superfund site on Thursday (2/7), at the Dupont Senior Housing Center (80 Dupont St.) from 7 p.m. – 8:30 p.m.

A letter (PDF) addressed to the NYC School Construction Authority written by a coalition of neighborhood groups and public officials explains that the planned site for the proposed school sits across the street from one of the most contaminated parcels in NY state:

The ground underneath the NuHart site is contaminated with an estimated 40,000 to 60,000 gallons of phthalates, which have begun migrating off site in a plume, toward the proposed school site. We will not be completely certain of the precise volume of phthalates under the NuHart site until the remediation begins. Phthalates are particularly hazardous to children’s health and have been implicated in negative infant and child health conditions like reduced gestational growth, asthma and issues with neurological and reproductive systems.1 Researchers and government agencies, including here in New York City, have strongly cautioned parents to reduce their children’s exposure to these highly toxic chemicals. These chemicals are so toxic they have been banned in children’s toys. The site is also contaminated with trichloroethylene (TCE), a known carcinogen that can have serious effects on both long and short term health. These chemicals have been found in the soil, ground water and soil vapor. Soil vapor is of particular concern because of the potential that it has to migrate off-site. Continue reading

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Future of Proposed K-8 School Next to Superfund Site in Question

Map of proposed school next to the NuHart Superfund site (via North Brooklyn Neighbors)

The future of the proposed k-8 school across from a toxic site is in question. The current plan is to build the school on a vacant lot across the street from the NuHart Plastics Superfund site, one of the most contaminated sites in New York state.

NuHart Plastics Superfund site

NYC Councilmember Stephen Levin is holding a public meeting on  Feb. 7, at the Dupont Senior Housing Center (80 Dupont St.) at 7 p.m. regarding the school and has for the past three years cited efforts to seek an alternative site for a new k-8 school in the North Greenpoint area.

A petition from North Brooklyn Neighbors in opposition to the location of the future school at the corner of Franklin and Dupont streets has received over 6,600 signatures so far.

The NuHart Plastics building spewed toxic fumes into the neighborhood while producing vinyl sheeting from 1950 – 2004, during which time underground storage tanks of toxic chemicals leaked into the groundwater and soil. Today as much as 60,000 gallons of phthalates are underground at the site and the toxic plume has migrated west toward the Greenpoint Playground across the street.

The underground plume at the corner of Franklin and Dupont streets (via North Brooklyn Neighbors)

While local residents are not currently a risk for exposure at the moment while the toxins remain more than 10 feet underground, the cleanup process is supposed to start following the demolition of the building which could start later this year following approval of the proposal of the cleanup plan by the state. Continue reading

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