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Feds unveil $613M proposal to clean Housatonic of PCBs

Wednesday, June 4, 2014
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LENOX, Mass. — Federal environmental officials have unveiled their proposal for a massive cleanup of PCB contamination from a 10-mile stretch of the Housatonic River south of Pittsfield.

The cleanup, including removal of the likely cancer-causing chemicals by excavating, dredging and capping sediment, would cost General Electric an estimated $613 million and take about 13 years to complete, according to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency's plan released online Monday.

A public hearing on the proposal is scheduled for Wednesday in Lenox.

The cleanup is needed because General Electric released the polychlorinated biphenyls, a probable cancer-causing agent, into the river from its transformer plant in Pittsfield from 1932 until 1977.

GE, which tried and failed to reach an agreement on the cleanup, tells The Berkshire Eagle it is reviewing the proposal.

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