Editorial: If GE will clean up maybe it can return













The editorial in the Times Herald Record on August 22nd focused on General Electric and the PCBs that are still in the Hudson River: "General Electric wants to come home but only if New York makes it worthwhile for the company, only if what we offer in tax breaks and other goodies is more lucrative than what Connecticut counter-offers to keep the headquarters in Fairfield.As competitions go, this is a familiar one, a tale of two states trying to lure a large corporation in hopes that its taxes and especially the taxes paid by its top employees will more than make up for the other subsidies.  Read more here.

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As Cuomo woos GE, Heastie talks of company’s ‘responsibility’

Campaign for a Cleaner Hudson members spoke to NYS Assembly Speaker Carl E. Heastie today in Mechanicville about the GE dredging project and what it means for NY and the communities all along the river that all PCBs are removed from the river.

POLITICO New York reported this week: "The top Democrat in the state Legislature said on Tuesday that General Electric needs to be a good corporate citizen, and that New York should consider its record before offering any incentive package to lure the industrial giant's headquarters back to the Empire State.

POLITICO New York reported yesterday that Cuomo had quietly visited the company's Connecticut headquarters recently to pitch executives on a move.

Standing next to a solar-powered boat on the shore of the Hudson River — where he was greeted by local officials, environmental activists, and a blazing sun — Assembly Speaker Carl Heastie listened to arguments making the case that GE should do more to clean up the river.

“I know that this has been a huge issue here, in the Assembly. Many of our colleagues support the clean-up here,” Heastie said. “I believe companies should be good corporate citizens and they have a social responsibility, and I think in the discussion on GE moving here, their responsibility and what they need to do here should be part of any discussion.”"

Read more here.






Campaign for a Cleaner Hudson members spoke to NYS Assembly Speaker Carl E. Heastie today in Mechanicville about the GE dredging project and what it means for NY and the communities all along the river that all PCBs are removed from the river.

Photo: Riverkeeper

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Join the ‪#‎ILoveTheHudsonBecause‬ campaign! Tell General Electric & Governor Andrew Cuomo to ‪#‎RestoreOurRiverFromPCBs‬

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Letter in the Times Union: GE's dredging far from complete

In a recent op-ed, GE claims it has done everything necessary to remove toxic PCBs that it dumped into the Hudson River decades ago — and that EPA agrees.
Neither is true.
First, a significant amount of PCB contamination will remain if GE stops dredging this fall, as planned. A new federal report found there are 2-3 times more PCBs in the Upper Hudson than EPA originally estimated.
That additional pollution is not currently slated for cleanup, and more dredging is necessary to get rid of it. Otherwise, fish still won't be safe to eat, commercial shipping lanes won't be safe to dredge, and even the air people breathe along the Hudson will have higher-than-normal PCB levels, threatening public health.
Second, GE implies that it is required to dismantle its current sediment processing facility when dredging ends this fall, preventing further cleanup. But EPA has made it clear that, by court order, the corporation has to negotiate what happens next, and they can't just pick up and leave. As the EPA Project Director said: "GE is not the decider here."
Finally, GE neglects to mention that the EPA-negotiated cleanup is just one part of its obligation to restore the river. The company will still have to pay for the damage it has caused to the state's natural resources. The more sediment left behind, the higher that bill should be.
GE must stop trying to cut corners and finally clean up the mess it made in the Hudson River in full.
Mark A. Izeman
Daniel Raichel
New York Program, Natural Resources Defense Council
New York City

Read in the Times Union here.

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Candlelight vigils call on GE to finish dredging river

Mid Hudson News reports: "Residents and local activists gathered at Beacon’s Scenic Hudson Long Dock Park Thursday night for a candlelight vigil to serve as a public demonstration urging General Electric to finish their dredging of PCBs from the Hudson River. GE, over a number of years, had dumped millions of pounds of PCBs into the Hudson and they are entering their final dredging period for the project." Read more here.

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Protesters: GE needs to clean up river

News 12 Westchester reports: "Demonstrators in Newburgh are calling on a major corporation to continue cleanup of the Hudson River.     After decades of dumping PCBs into the Hudson River, General Electric started a dredging project in the river to clean up millions of pounds of the toxic chemicals."  See more here.


Photo: News 12

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Vigil planned to pressure G.E. on Hudson River cleanup

Capital New York reported: "Nine municipalities along the Hudson River will hold a candlelight vigil Thursday evening to put pressure on General Electric and Governor Andrew Cuomo to remove more pollutants from the river.

G.E. is winding down a six-year dredging of the Hudson for PCBs the company dumped there for decades. A bipartisan group of lawmakers from both houses of the state Legislature have called on G.E. to continue its work and leave behind equipment used in the dredging project. They have also called on Cuomo to pressure G.E. not to leave a job unfinished. G.E. Officials have repeatedly said the company will not conduct more dredging in other areas of the river."  Read more here.

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Lawmakers Ask GE, Cuomo For More Dredging

WAMC reports: "A vast majority of New York State Assemblymembers this week sent letters to General Electric and Governor Andrew Cuomo asking for more PCB removal along the Hudson River.

GE’s EPA-approved plan to remove toxic PCB chemicals from the Hudson River wraps up this fall. But more than 140 members of the New York State Assembly are urging General Electric to dredge additional PCB hotspots throughout the river."

Read or listen more here.

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PCB dredge clout gains

Dan Little/Special to the Times Union

Times Union reports: "State lawmakers are adding their voices to local officials and environmental groups calling for General Electric to expand its billion-dollar dredging of Hudson River PCBs to include more of the river and the Champlain Canal.
Assemblyman Steve Englebright, chairman of the Environmental Conservation Committee, released a letter Wednesday signed by 141 lawmakers in support of additional dredging beyond what is being required by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency.
A second letter to Gov. Andrew Cuomo urges him to "use the state's full legal power and the authority and influence of your office" to convince GE, which has steadfastly insisted it is not required to perform any further dredging beyond what the EPA ordered."

Read more here.


Photo: Dan Little/Special to the Times Union

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141 Assembly Members tell GE: Bring Good Things to Life — Complete the Hudson River Cleanup

Group also calls on Gov. Cuomo to take the lead in keeping GE accountable for remediating New York's largest Superfund site.


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