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RSS FeedsOutrage, calls for health study after Chemical Valley spills investigation
(The Star Food)


16 october 2017 14:24:42

Outrage, calls for health study after Chemical Valley spills investigation
(The Star Food)

A chorus of outraged Ontarians — ranging from to the province’s environment watchdog to the First Nations community living in the shadows of industrial smokestacks — called for a health study Sunday in the aftermath of an investigation revealing a pattern of potentially dangerous leaks in Sarnia’s Chemical Valley. Ontario environmental commissioner Dianne Saxe said the situation in the area — home to Canada’s highest concentration of petrochemical plants — is “shameful.” “It is clear to me that this situation is outrageous and it needs immediate attention,” Saxe said, adding that there needs to be better air monitoring by industry and the province.“First Nations communities disproportionately bear the burden of pollution across Ontario and that needs to change.” Read more:Indigenous activist taking province to court over air pollution regulationsOntario commits $85 million to clean up ‘gross neglect’ at Grassy NarrowsNew reports say Canada’s oil, gas methane emissions higher than previously thoughtThe joint investigation — carried out by the Star, Global News, the National Observer and journalism schools at Ryerson and Concordia — raised questions about whether companies and the provincial government are properly warning residents of Sarnia and the nearby Aamjiwnaang First Nation when chemicals — including benzene, known to cause cancer at high levels of long-term exposure — are leaked. Though benzene levels in Sarnia have dropped significantly in the past 25 years, documents obtained by the investigation revealed how refineries in the area release three to 10 times the annual limit of the carcinogen. Despite a decade of pleas from residents and local politicians for a health study examining the effects on those who live near the 57 polluters registered with the Canadian and U.S. governments within 25 kilometres of Sarnia, provincial and federa ...
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