Senators want smelting sites addressed

Cincinnati Enquirer

Six U.S. senators are calling on the Environmental Protection Agency to immediately examine the health threats posed by forgotten factory sites featured in a recent USA TODAY investigation.

In a letter sent Wednesday to EPA Administrator Lisa Jackson, the senators wrote, “We urge you to take immediate action to review unassessed sites to determine priority locations for remediation, such as those near schools or playgrounds. It is necessary to ensure that people living near these sites, especially children, are safe.”

The letter was organized by Sen. Sherrod Brown, D-Ohio, and was also signed by Sens. Robert Casey, D-Pa.; Jack Reed, D-R.I.; Sheldon Whitehouse, D-R.I.; Jeff Merkley, D-Ore.; and Al Franken, D-Minn.

“These former lead smelter sites may no longer exist, but as USA Today has revealed, residual contamination continues to pervade many communities in Ohio and across America,” Brown said in a statement, noting that several sites featured in the series were in Cleveland and Cincinnati. “The EPA must move quickly to ensure that Ohioans living near these sites are aware of the potential hazards, and to place these sites on a high priority list for remediation.”

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