Category Archives: Environment


EPA Updates Public About West Lake Landfill and Requests Public Comment Submissions

EPA public meeting about proposed West Lake Landfill remedies held March 6, 2018, in Bridgeton, Mo.

To simply write that the Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) public meeting detailing proposed remedies for West Lake Landfill was a packed house would be an understatement. The meeting hall was overflowing and parking was a mess. It is estimated that more than 1,000 people attended.

The meeting, held March 6, 2018, in Bridgeton, Mo, outlined the eight different plans the EPA is currently considering as a remedy to the illegally dumped radioactive waste contained in West Lake Landfill.

Continue reading below to see outlines of the eight proposed West Lake Landfill remedies, and video clips of the comments made at the meeting by Just Moms stl co-founders Karen Nickel and Dawn Chapman, Bridgeton Mayor Terry Briggs, and Albert Kelly, chair of the EPA’s Superfund Task Force and advisor to EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt.

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Stop Blocking The Grainbelt Express for Clean St. Louis Energy

Photo Courtesy Webster-Kirkwood Times.

The St. Louis Board of Aldermen last fall passed a measure aimed at powering the city entirely on renewable energy sources, including wind and power by 2035. The action drew national praise.

It’s an ambitious proposal that faces a lot of roadblocks. St. Louis is home to three major coal companies that haven’t been shy about expressing their opposition.

Find out more about this topic below.

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Radioactive Legacy of St. Louis: The Cost, The Human Suffering, The Power of Community

EPA Estimate for West Lake Radioactive Debris Cleanup
Landfill Cap: $95 Million
Partial Removal:   $236 Million
Total Removal:  $700 Million

Only now – after years of tears, diseases and deaths – does it seem that there is an acknowledgment of the full extent of the human damage that began when uranium ore came to St. Louis for processing for the manufacture of atomic weapons. And only now does there seem to be a realization of just how costly the cleanup of much of the resulting radioactive contamination will be.

“The truth is that until the last shovel full of this waste is removed from these areas, the region remains at risk,” said Dawn Chapman of Just MomsSTL. “The landfill fire helps people realize and think about all the issues surrounding this radioactive waste — and what can go wrong. It’s also an example of how dragging your feet and passing these issues on down the road leads to damaged health and looming emergency situations that could have been avoided.”

— Excerpted from Don Corrigan’s story in the next issue of Gateway Journalism Review. The story covers the reactions of Just MomsSTL members to the Feb. 1 announcement by EPA about plans to finally address the radioactive landfill at West Lake in North St. Louis County.

Pictured above: Dawn Chapman (Left) and Karen Nickel, co-founders of Just Moms STL.

Just MomsSTL will receive the Whistleblowers Awards from Gateway Journalism Review at its yearly event celebrating journalism in April:

WHAT:  Gateway Journalism Review’s yearly event celebration
WHEN: Thursday, April 12, 6 p.m. to 9:30 p.m. when our speaker will be Carl Bernstein at the Edward Jones HQ, Manchester & Ballas Roads.
WHERE:  Edward Jones HQ, Manchester & Ballas Roads, Des Peres.
HIGHLIGHTS:  Carl Bernstein of the Washington Post Watergate Investigation will be interviewed live from his New York location.
AWARDS:  Three awards to be presented:  2018 Whistle Blower Award, Lifetime Achievement Award, 2018 Freedom Fighter Award.

To see past coverage and podcast interviews about the West Lake Landfill and Cold Water Creek Radioactive Contamination Issue by Environmental Echo,
please see below:

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Urban Chestnut Brewing Company Named One Of EPA’s 2017 WasteWise Winners

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) recognizes the prevention and diversion accomplishments of the Urban Chestnut Brewing Company in St. Louis, Mo., as one of 16 WasteWise national award winners, who collectively prevented and recycled over 355,801 tons of waste, saving $17.7 million in avoided landfill fees.

“This is yet another excellent example of the EPA partnering with communities and organizations to achieve environmental and economic benefits through waste prevention and management. The WasteWise award winners have exemplified tremendous environmental stewardship and fiscal responsibility, and we commend their efforts,” said EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt.

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What Happens When Climate Change Alters Our Groundwater Patterns?

Here is an interesting look at how climate change could affect one of our most important resources- groundwater.

The article, “How climate change will mess with water ‘recharge’ in Western U.S.,” by the University of Arizona, and posted on Futurity, discusses a study about the possible changes to “groundwater recharge” due to climate change.

Read the article HERE.


NOAA Says 2017 Third Warmest Year On Record Without An El Niño Present

Interesting information from Climate Carl. The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) released data on the “global year to date temperature anomalies.”

From Carl’s Climate Letter #1069:
Year-to-date comparison of global temperatures for 2017 and all previous years since 1880.  This year ranks as the third highest through November and is almost sure to hold that position for the full year.  The latest four years will all be included in the four highest of all-time.

See the report from Climate Carl’s analysis HERE.

Also, see NOAA’s “Assessing the Global Climate in 2017” report HERE.


Gateway Journalism Review: TV meteorologists warm to climate change

Meteorologist Cindy Preszler, who is well-known in St. Louis for her past work at KSDK-TV, now uses Climate Matters’ graphs and data to emphasize the impact of global warming on the local weather on her new

TV meteorologists have a new informational outlet to help provide localized climate information. The project is called Climate Matters.

“Supported by the National Science Foundation, the project is designed to increase the quality and quantity of reporting on climate-change science, impacts, and solutions.

According to Shari Bell of Climate Central, TV meteorologists were somewhat skeptical of the program at first.  Weather forecaster Cindy Preszler, now retired from KSDK-TV in St. Louis, was one of the first to sign on.”

The article, written by Don Corrigan and published in the latest Gateway Journalism Review, showcases the program’s pilot project in Missouri. And also provides an inside look at how Climate Matters can help local audiences bridge the gap between weather and climate change. The project currently works with about 460 weather professionals in 135 markets across the country.

Find links to the Gateway Journalism Review article and Preszler’s new local weather website by reading more below.

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Hey, What Are You Going To Do With That Old Computer & Outdated Electronic Devices? Recycling E-scrap May Be More Important & Easier Than You Think.

Photo: GreenStar via Pixabay.

Here’s a headline for you: “E-waste grew 8 percent in just 2 years. Just one-fifth was recycled. – A growing global middle class and our tech-saturated lives are burying the planet in electronic waste.” The article appeared in Environmental Health News (EHN) recently.

While the public happily pursues the latest popular new technology and electronic gadget, what is happening to the discarded electronic devices?  Apparently, recycling the equipment is not on top of the list. Check out the EHN article HERE.

Many people are conscious of recycling glass, plastics, and other materials – so why not electronics? It could be many reasons, like the items could be bulky or the items may not be able to be picked up with the rest of a household’s recyclable materials. It’s not just households – businesses can also produce a large amount of electronic waste.

A step in the right direction may be as simple as knowing where to take our e-scrap to be recycled.

So what should we do with our electronic waste in the St. Louis area and Missouri? Find a few informational resources that can help below.

Also, can our electronic waste be a threat to national security? One national advocacy organization says – yes.

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West Lake Landfill Named In Top 10 Superfund Sites Targeted For Immediate Action

The advocacy group, JUST MOMS STL, released a statement after West Lake Landfill landed on the EPA’s top 10 list of Superfund Sites slated for immediate action. For more information, and comments from Karen Nickel and Dawn Chapman, see the release below.  


2017 Has Been A Tough Year For Environmental Issues

Don Corrigan

Let’s be honest: nature, the outdoors and the environment have taken a beating this year. But before we get to the bad news, let’s chalk up some much-needed good news – much of it is local.

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