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E-M:/ FW: Saginaw News ed: Dredging plans can't run aground

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Dredging plans can't run aground


Dredging plans can't run aground

Friday, December 17, 2004

The clock keeps ticking -- and silt keeps accumulating -- as plans to dredge the Saginaw River between Bay City and Zilwaukee proceed at a glacial pace.

Everyone agrees the dredging project is urgently needed. Planning has plodded along for the better part of two decades. Larger ships avoid or can't make trips upriver now. The Saginaw receiving port, the state's second busiest after Detroit, could shut down to most ships within the next year if the river isn't dredged.

What's mucking up the process? Residents who live near the site where the U.S. Corps of Engineers plan to dump the dredged silt have a fevered case of "Not In My Back Yard," or NIMBY.

Citizens Against Toxic Substances is demanding the government first conduct an environmental impact study on the 280-acre site. At a hearing last week, the latest objections focused on dioxins and soil samples showing high concentrations in the river bed. Dioxin is a concern downriver from the Tittabawassee, which flows into the Saginaw. Environmental groups are engaged with the state, and putting pressure on Dow Chemical Co., to get the Tittabawassee contamination cleaned up.



© 2004 Saginaw News. Used with permission

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