In Hearing, Environmental Groups, GE And EPA Battle Over Planned PCB Dump

A lawn sign in Lee, Massachusetts, designed by Reed Anderson of Great Barrington, calls for no local dumps for PCB waste from General Electric. (Nancy Eve Cohen/NEPM)

Opponents of a waste dump containing PCB sediment planned for Lee, Massachusetts, took their case before the federal Environmental Appeals Board on Thursday.

The Housatonic River Initiative and the Housatonic Environmental Action League are appealing a permit the EPA’s New England office issued for cleanup of sections of the Housatonic River. The river was polluted decades ago by a now-closed General Electric plant upstream in Pittsfield.

The permit is in line with a settlement reached in early 2020 by the agency, GE, local communities and some other environmental groups.

Lawyer Stephanie Parker represents the groups opposing the dump, which would be located about 1,000 feet from the river. Parker said the permit was not driven by science, but by a settlement agreement.

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