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Scenes from Experts Discussing Water Contamination Join Spirited What's Next Discussion
Activist Myra Nye who grew up next to the Bayer Plant in Institute, WV discussed how to petition and lobby legislators so that a tragedy like this can never happen again.
Others asked that the Public Service Commission be contacted noting that West Virginia American Water will ask for a rate increase in 2015 to recoup their expenses from cleaning up after their intake became contaminated and for the expense of providing bottled water.
Bringing the crisis home to Huntington, the lack of a backup supply and the fact that the intake in the city was not turned off were discussed. Matt Pinson, vice president of Pinson Coal and HNN publisher, displayed a map illustrating concerns about the proximity of the water intake to Special Metals a.k.a. Huntington Alloys, where they worked with closely with the Atomic Energy Commission weapons facility in the 1950s and early 1960s. Several former employees allege that debris from that facility were buried in the Dietz Hollow landfill in Guyandotte.
The remainder of the debris was, according to official previously published documents, transported to Piketon, Ohio , and buried at the Portsmouth Gaseous Diffusion Plant where it leached into the groundwater and contaminated the acquifer .
In addition, several audience members discussed other WV spills that have caused harm to their families, including one woman who attested to an incident at the University of Charleston where several female students sustained serious injuries from drinking water that contained dioxins and arsenic.
Former Huntington Sanitary Board executive director and former Huntington Assistant Public Works Director attended the meeting at Marshall.
An additional story will follow.