New England Public Radio - General Electric and the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency are battling over the last stretch of the PCB clean-up of the Housatonic River in Massachusetts from Pittsfield through Great Barrington.
Danny Reible is an environmental engineer from Texas Tech University, who researches the management of contaminated sediments. (He has served as a consultant for both the EPAand GE, but not on the Housatonic clean-up project.) Reible says PCBs can be safely disposed of next to a river, in part, because, unlike some other toxins, they bind to organic matter and are less likely to move.
"A properly designed landfill could manage these materials indefinitely," Reible says.
He explains a secure disposal site would be monitored -- and lined and covered with clay and plastic.