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This Just In: USEPA Expects 35 Years and $280 Billion Cleanup

Yes, I know it's not news to you and me. But the USEPA thinks that the Report it issued Friday is.

News, that is.

You see, the USEPA estimates that there will be as many as 355,000 sites to cleanup, with up to 9,267 more discovered each year. Well, the real news is that these figures represent a 60 percent increase in the number of sites than were identified in the USEPA's last study from 1996. Back then, the USEPA thought it would only take $187 billion to cleanup; now, as much as $280 billion.

I don't trust the figures the USEPA released Friday. Think about it. Imagine what it's going to really cost 35 years from now.

Here's the USEPA's spin: "The purpose of the report is to allow us to plan and develop better strategies to meet the nation's cleanup needs," said spokeswoman Cynthia Bergman.

Who's she kidding? A sixty percent increase in just eight years? How can we trust any of the USEPA's numbers - then, now or in the future? More important, who's running the show back in D.C.?

Government bureaucracy? That's just another oxymoron.

I've got an idea. Let's stop issuing reports and start cleaning up the sites contaminated by the government, the country's worst offender.

Excluding the Departments of Defense and Energy, other government agencies including the Departments of Interior, Agriculture and Transportation have been spending $200 million annually for site cleanups, and have up to $21 billion more of cleanup work to be done over 30 years. DOD expects to spend $33 billion, and DOE expects to spend $35 billion.

All told, the government expects to spend something like $90 billion, or almost one third of the total amount of cleanups. The USEPA wants us to "plan" on those numbers.

Right. That'll be the day.

Want to buy a bridge?

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Posted by J. Craig Williams on Saturday, December 04, 2004


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