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E-M:/ Chemical Policy Alert covers internal memos on DEQ/Dow collusion

Enviro-Mich message from Tracey Easthope <tracey@ecocenter.org>

Long article in Chemical Policy alert about recent revelations of a
"sweetheart deal" being crafted by DEQ management to relieve
Dow Chemical of liability in the contamination of the
Saginaw Bay watershed with dioxin.


Chemical Policy Alert
October 28, 2002

Dow Pursues Deal With Michigan For Relaxed Dioxin Standards In Midland

Dow Chemical is negotiating an agreement with the Michigan Department 
of Environmental Quality (DEQ) that could allow dioxin contamination 
near the company's headquarters to exceed state limits, in exchange 
for a comprehensive study on the health impacts to area residents. 
Industry officials argue that the health study could be useful in 
demonstrating the relevance of national risk reviews to site-specific 
data on cleaning up dioxin pollution.

But staff for Michigan attorney general Jennifer Granholm, who is 
running for governor in next week's election, have argued that such 
an agreement would violate state law, while environmentalists charge 
that the agreement would represent a "sweetheart deal" by allowing 
Dow to skirt existing cleanup requirements....

and Russ Harding is quoted as saying:

"Frankly, Dow would like to get this done with our administration 
here; the statements that the attorney general made in this campaign 
scare 'em to death," he said.


While admitting that DEQ could require Dow to clean up the dioxin at 
the state level of 90 ppt, Harding said "that would be a huge expense 
for them [Dow] for what they think is not money well-spent."

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