May 20, 2015

Army Briefs Residents on Draft 5-Year Site-Wide Cleanup Plan

Spring Valley residents expressed concerns about the proposed five-year timeline for removing any remaining hazardous remains left from World War I-era chemical weapons testing in the area at a community meeting last week ... The U.S. Army has been working to clean up Spring Valley for more than two decades, addressing materials that its former munitions testing facility on the American University campus left behind nearly a century ago.
Dan Noble, the Spring Valley cleanup project manager from the Army Corps, said a comment period on a recently released Remedial Investigation Report will end on May 26 ...  The risk factors in Spring Valley fall into two categories: chemical concerns in the soil and risks associated with munitions and explosives.   The areas affected include the southern portion of American University’s campus and the surrounding residential neighborhood ...  
Dan Noble
One resident, Mara Miller, urged the Army to take more decisive action to clean up the neighborhood.  Through occasional tears, Miller said she suffers from a rare immunodeficiency disease that she believes she contracted as a result of her family living in Spring Valley for more than 50 years. “I think the most important part is we find the chemicals and get rid of them,” Miller said ...  Noble asked Miller to submit a written comment in the interest of time.  After the comment period ends, the Army Corps staff will read and respond to each comment individually, he said.  
Mark Lieberman
Northwest Current
May 20, 2015

Lauren Mara Miller 
Mara Miller: [pg. 9]  Some of my neighbors got together over a period of years and reported health problems — there's 26 pages worth of people — house after house after house — but no one [here] wants to talk about it.  It's like a big elephant in the room that no one wants to mention ... I'm here because I was once a kid who got poisoned by that and a grown-up who got poisoned.  And I don't want it to happen to anybody else ... [pg. 14] It's horrible to have your property locked up, but it worse when you whole life is ruined and shortened.
Mara Miller
Remedial Investigation Report
Community Meeting
May 12, 2015

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