On Long Island, When It Rains, It Plumes
For years, we at The Community Alliance have been saying, "There must be something in the water."
Why is it, after all, that we have more than our fair share of kooks, killers, Lolitas, and the lot? And how do we account for the way Long Islanders vote, time and time again?
No, it is not the property tax that drives 'em to the brink, or even the realization of suburbia lost. Damn it. It's the drinking water!
Pesticides. Herbicides. PCBs. MTBE. All leaching down into the aquifers that supply us with our water. Bathing water. Cooking water. Drinking water.
Fifty years of toxic waste on our lawns, in our sewers, down our drains, and just what do you think is coming up from the wells, and out of the tap?
We've blogged about the contamination of our water supply -- more than once -- and yet, we've barely touched what dangers lurk beneath the surface of our Long Island.
The Long Island Press, in an article published last week [Troubled Water], gives credence to our concerns about Long Island's drinking water, as well as the health and safety of those who have been drinking it, cooking with it, and bathing in it, lo these many years.
Carcinogens, from Benzene to MTBE, abound in our water supply, unrefuted by the authorities that watch over such things [but for the local water districts, which, overwhelming evidence notwithstanding, continue to tell residents that their water is safe to drink]
Yeah. "Safe to drink." As long as you don't mind glowing in the dark, or giving birth to kids with 3 arms and six legs!
For all of the designation of SuperFund sites by the State DEC, and the hype of local officials, who tout environmental projects, but literally overlook the water, there has been far too much laxity in oversight and regulation (where there was any at all), and State, County and Town are have done way too little in terms of remediation.
The underground aquifers are Long Island's only source of drinking water (save the bottled stuff that you buy at Costco).
The question is no longer, "Can our water supply, once pristine, be preserved?" It is now, "Is the water that flows from the tap today, already tainted, if not poisoned, safe for us to drink?"
Officialdom says the wells, and the water that flows from them, has not been impacted by the plumes of toxic pollutants. Not yet, anyway.
The fires that burn below -- even when they take the form of H2O -- are raging. How long before the Arsenic and old waste make it to your tap is anybody's guess!
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For more on protecting Long Island's water, visit Citizens Campaign for the Environment and the Long Island Neighborhood Network.