For Immediate Release: August 26, 2010
Groundwater Contamination Threatens Massapequa Public Supply Wells
Massapequa Water District Demands Action from the Federal Environmental Protection Agency for the Cleanup of Groundwater Contamination that Threatens the Massapequa Water District Public Supply Wells
(Massapequa, N.Y.) The Massapequa Water District has demanded that the Federal Environmental Protection Agency immediately takeover and force the cleanup of the Superfund site known as the Northrop-Grumman facility in Bethpage, New York. The Massapequa Water District has made this demand through the office of Senator Charles Schumer the ranking senator for New York. The Massapequa Water District contends that under federal law the “Sole Source Aquifer” that supplies water to the residents of Nassau and Suffolk County can only fall under the jurisdiction of the federal Environmental Protection Agency regarding cleanups of Superfund sites. The New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (State DEC) has failed to either discuss, recognize, or meet with the Massapequa Water District in its’ efforts to reverse the New York State DEC decision that would allow the massive highly contaminated plume to enter the Massapequa Water District supply wells .
Recently Newsday, the only daily newspaper on Long Island, has failed to print or acknowledge letters from the Massapequa Water District indicating the threat to public health that is contained in the Northrop-Grumman plume. The DEC, EPA, and Newsday have also failed to acknowledge the fact that over the last 25 years wellhead treatment, the DEC’s acceptable least costly alternative to total cleanup, has not kept pace with the EPA decisions regarding acceptable drinking water ingestion by the public. The requirements for acceptable drinking water ingestion have become more stringent over the past 25 years rendering wellhead treatment an unacceptable alternative.
It is apparent that without immediate federal intervention that the Massapequa Water District’s supply wells will be impacted requiring costly cleanup in compliance with ever changing EPA’s drinking water standards.
The District demands the simple answer: Clean up the contaminated plume to what is required under federal laws. Further the District is making these demands to the Federal government simply because the problems created at the Northrop-Grumman site were the result of activities by the United States Navy, and the National Aeronautical and Space Administration and must be cleaned up by the United States Government and Grumman.
Although the Massapequa Water District is small in comparison to the massive plume emanating from the Northrop-Grumman site the rights to a clean water supply are governed by the policies, procedures of the federal Environmental Protection Agency that have been funded through the years by taxpayers. In the spirit of community involvement, local civic associations have begun the petitioning process to let our federally elected officials know that this is a matter of deep concern that will not be alleviated by political posturing or rhetoric.
Most recent articles that Newsday has published including an article on the impact of Perchloroethylene (PCE) as a local problem from cleaning fluid did not provide or even allude to the massive amounts of PCE that exist and are headed towards the Massapequa’s from the Northrop-Grumman plume. A letter written in protest by the Massapequa Water District has yet to be acknowledged by Newsday. Newsday’s recent feature article regarding the Future of Long Island addressed environmental issues exclusive of the numerous Superfund sites that are impacting Long Island’s Sole Source Aquifer. A response to this article by a water district commissioner has also failed to be acknowledged by Newsday.
It is sad to report that the Massapequa Water District, on behalf of its 45,000 consumers, has received no help from the federal government, no help from our federally elected officials, and no help from Newsday, the only Long Island daily newspaper.
This serious matter to the health and safety of all water consumers that have either been affected or will be affected by this contaminated plume needs to be addressed immediately by the residents of the Massapequa’s by direct contact with their federally elected officials with the demand that they enforce the legal requirements granted to the EPA by Congress and thus effect a proper and environmentally sound clean up this Superfund site.
For more information regarding the Grumman Plume or the Massapequa Water District please contact John Caruso, Commissioner, Massapequa Water District, at firstname.lastname@example.org or 516-798-5269.