Merulla demands fallout investigation

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TheSpec.com - Local - Merulla demands fallout investigation


April 05, 2010
Eric McGuiness

Ward 4 Councillor Sam Merulla is calling on the Ontario Ministry of the Environment to thoroughly investigate weekend reports of black industrial fallout in east Hamilton.


Merulla, who identifies the substance as carbon black without pointing a finger at any one company, says: “It is very unacceptable and disheartening that rogue industry continues to time what I believe to be their intentional release of carbon black in an attempt to mitigate costs of operational needs just prior to long weekends, making it very difficult to determine the source and enforce provincial laws which are weak and generally self-regulated, when provincial officers are on stat holidays and the ministry enforcement branch are running skeleton crews.


“Its unconscionable, saddening and frankly illegal, and we must be vigilant to ensure provincial legislation changes to allow for tougher enforcement and penalties.”


A woman who wouldn’t leave her name called The Spectator to report the fallout, saying there was less than in some previous incidents, but it was still a nuisance. She said she had notified the Environment Ministry’s Spills Action Centre in Toronto.


Ministry offices are closed today, Easter Monday. A staffer at the spills centre said she wasn’t authorized to talk to the news media.


Hamilton Beach residents report being hit by shiny, metallic fallout during March break.

Ministry officers responded to complaints, but no one is available today to say if a source was found.


Black fallout has been a problem in the east end for years, but complaints had dropped off recently. Columbian Carbon, which makes carbon black, has generally denied responsibility, and the ministry says it is difficult to fingerprint the fallout to determine a source.

emcguinness@thespec.com


905-526-4650
 
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