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E-M:/ International Paper and Dioxin

Enviro-Mich message from Murphwild1@aol.com

This certainly should alarm citizens in Michigan and throughout the Great 
Lakes region.  International Paper should change their name to International 
Dioxin Distribution.

Murray Dailey

The Fox River is one of the biggest toxic contamination cases in the country, 
affecting all of Green Bay and Lake Michigan, a 4-state area.

January 30, 2001

For more information contact Becky Katers 920-437-7304 <<cleanwater@cwac.net>

To: Wisconsin Activists ---

I am concerned about the River Alliance of Wisconsin.

At the Friday meeting of the Wisconsin Stewardship Network, a vote

was held on whether to add 4 issues to WSN's priority list of issues.

The issues were the northern transmission line, groundwater

supplies (Perrier, etc.), mercury legislation, and the Fox River PCB


The first three were adopted.  The Fox River wasn't.

The Fox River is one of the biggest toxic contamination cases in the

country, affecting all of Green Bay and Lake Michigan, a 4-state

area.   After 15 years of work, it's finally coming to a head in the

next 6 months, so support is critical NOW.   The DNR expects to

propose the final comprehensive cleanup plan in a few months, which

could cost between $400 million and $1.2 billion   The 6 paper

companies are fighting tooth and nail against the cleanup, and they

are likely to step up their attacks on the DNR, EPA, U.S. Fish and

Wildlife Service and others.

Therefore, the WSN vote to not list the Fox River as priority is

disturbing.  (I am resigning from WSN as a result.)

Even more disturbing is the fact that Todd Ambs of the

RIVER ALLIANCE voted against it.  The Alliance calls itself the

premier river group in the state, and brags that it supports local

groups working on river issues, but they just stabbed us in the back

on one of the biggest river fights in the state and country.

We had 5 public hearings over the past 2 months on the Natural

Resources Damage Assessment --- which would provide $170 to $333

million in funding for wetland habitat (etc.) work in Northeast

Wisconsin as compensation for past and future PCB damages on the Fox


The River Alliance was invited to testify in support at these

hearings, but sent no one.

At the same time, the River Alliance is accepting major funding from

International Paper Company (IP) to pay for the conference on

"Celebrating Community-Based Conservation" in April.  (how ironic)

This company has 2 large polluting mills on the Fox River.

International Paper is also one of the biggest and worst bad actors

on the global paper scene, because they rabidly oppose new Totally

Chlorine Free (TCF) paper making technologies which would eliminate

all chlorinated organic (dioxin, etc.) releases from paper companies.

TCF technologies also make closed-loop wastewater recycling

processes possible, by removing the corrosive chlorine.  (Closed loop

recycling would save water, energy and chemicals, and is more

economical, once the capital investment is made to switch

technologies.)   We could have zero-wastewater paper mills, if not

for lobbying by companies like IP against TCF technology.

The North American paper industry (with IP in the lead)

has even used the World Trade Organization to intimidate the European

Economic Community into dropping requirements for TCF in Europe, by

calling it a trade barrier.  (Not sure if this has happened yet or

not, but I know they were working on it.)   European paper makers

often use TCF technologies.

The paper industry is one of the biggest polluters of rivers in

Wisconsin, with roughly 14 million pounds of toxic releases in 1996.

It's an outrage that the River Alliance is accepting funding from one

of the biggest paper corporations, at the same time that the River

Alliance is undercutting our work on the Fox River cleanup.

In addition, the River Alliance features Fox/Wolf Basin 2000 as one

of their organizational members.  Over the past 10 years, Fox/Wolf Basin 

2000 has received more than

$617,026 from Fox River dischargers, and has been a major lobbying

force against Superfund for the Fox River cleanup, and against the

Natural Resources Damage Assessment.

FWB2000 was created by Fort Howard Corporation (now Georgia

Pacific), the Green Bay Metropolitan Sewerage District, and the DNR

as a phony "environmental" group looking for "cost-effective"

solutions to the Fox River pollution problem.   Not surprisingly,

FWB2000 works to focus everyone's attention on non-point pollution,

which allows the paper mill and sewage treatment plant to blame

farmers and homeowners for the Fox River problem.  (Though farmers

and homeowners are NOT responsible for the severe PCB contamination

which got the Fox River nominated for toxic Superfund status.)

Their executive director called the PCB issue "overblown."   FWB2000

pretends to be a citizen environmental group, while serving the

interests of its corporate funders.

The River Alliance seems headed down the same path.

I'm really tired of  environmental groups who suck up all the grant

money and citizen donations, who put on a pretty show then do the

opposite of what they should be doing.

Rebecca Leighton Katers

Clean Water Action Council of N.E. Wisconsin

East Port Center

1270 Main Street, Suite 120

Green Bay, WI 54302

Phone:  920-437-7304

Fax:  920-437-7326

E-mail:  CleanWater@cwac.net

Homepage:  www.cwac.net

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