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Facts >> Toxic Soils

The proposed development site had been used for growing crops from 1856 to 1999. Past use of pesticides has resulted in toxaphene and dieldrin levels that far exceed what is considered safe for humans. Toxaphene is at over 3 times the concentration considered safe for humans over almost the entire Patterson Ranch area. Any dirt that is dug up can get toxics into the air, where it can be carried for miles. Workers may have to wear masks to protect themselves against toxic fumes.

Dieldrin has been linked to diseases such as Parkinson's, breast cancer, and immune, reproductive, and nervous system damage. When inhaled or ingested in sufficient quantities, toxaphene can damage the lungs, nervous system, kidneys, and may cause death.

Below are photos that show a remediation measure the Pattersons are using to try to fix the problem of toxins in the soil, that is, spraying microbes on the soil to degrade the extremely poisonous toxaphene, an insecticide banned in the US since 1986. There is no long history of successful results using this method.

Toxaphene breakdown products may settle and accumulate long-term in the drinking water supply underneath the soil.

Rainfall, stormwater runoff, proposed man-made fill (in an attempt to raise housing units above flooding and sea level rise) and grading excavation of soils all increase soil erosion and potentially allow toxic soils to be transported into nearby waterways such as Crandall Creek, which would further contaminate groundwater.

 

 

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