- The Niagara County Health Department has called on New York to require CWM Chemical Services to clean up a pond where there may be exposed nuclear waste—a site where CWM wants to create a new landfill, as the current one is at capacity. If the permit were approved, the pond would be filled in and the radioactive material buried.
- While some of the radioactive material was collected years ago, the government reported the soil and groundwater are still contaminated, according to the Buffalo News. County Public Health Director Daniel J. Stapleton believes the project could pose a public health threat.
- The Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) ordered CWM to cap the hazardous waste; to submit a schedule for these plans by March 1, and to have the project completed by Nov. 6, 2016.
CWM was told to remediate the pond in 2009, but in 2011, extremely high levels of radiation were detected in surface areas, prompting removal of contaminated dirt from two berms; sediment was removed from the pond floor too. But radioactive material on the surface at the northern berm was not removed.
While CWM has pushed for more than a decade for state permission to build a new landfill, Stapleton has his reservations about the project. He wrote in a letter he is not confident that all of the nuclear waste has been identified, considering past problems in determining what waste was there.
"Given the history of failed federal remediation efforts, it is not reasonable to anticipate contamination will be confined to the surface. Subsurface contamination can be identified only by performing sufficient subsurface sampling to an appropriate depth. This has not been done," his letter said.
Meanwhile, CWM has DEC’s approval to delay capping the hazardous waste landfill until spring, as regulations prohibit placing the landfill cover between Nov. 30 and April 1, 2016.
Local environmentalists, Residents for a Responsible Government, argue that the CWM’s request to delay the capping is an instance of "corporate greed."