Harbor Mud An Environmental 'Sleeping Giant'

Wednesday, November 10, 1999
Mud dredged from the bottom of harbors to keep ship commerce flowing is loaded with contaminants like dioxin and mercury, creating a sleeping giant of an environmental mess in America's oceans and waterways, water protection groups said. Scientists and environmentalists demanded that better government protections be employed to protect human health, fish and ecosystems from toxic harbor mud, and called for an immediate ban on the dumping of contaminated sediments. Every year 100 ocean dump sites receive 60 million tons of dredged harbor mud, equivalent to six million dump trucks of mud. Another 400 million tons of sediments are dumped into rivers, lakes, bays and estuaries, according to Clean Ocean Action and Coast Alliance interest groups.

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