A publication of Work On Waste USA, Inc., 82 Judson, Canton, NY 13617 315-379-9200 April 1992


The following excerpts are from slide transparencies prepared by the U.S. EPA’s Office of Research & Development (ORD), titled “A Status Briefing for the Deputy Administrator”, dated 2-14-92.

“*Dioxin does cause cancer in humans.

*Cancer may not be the most sensitive toxic response
resulting from dioxin exposure. Immunotoxicity
and reproductive effects appear to occur at body
burdens that are approximately 100 times lower than
those associated with cancer.

*Recent data indicate that there may not be a
threshold for certain responses to dioxin...

*Recent evidence has strengthened the conclusion
that the sensitivity of humans is similar to that
of experimental animals...

*Current exposure levels to dioxin and related
compounds appear to place people at or near a
body burden where sensitive responses may
occur, especially for subpopulations at
high-end of exposure, e.g., nursing infants,
recreational and subsistence anglers...

*ORD scientists have reached the tentative
conclusion that dioxin exposure may have been
responsible for the decline of Lake Trout in Lake
Ontario as a result of the reproductive toxicity of

Date: April 28, 1992. Time: 8:45 am to 5 pm.
Place: EPA Education Center Auditorium, 401 M Street, SW, Washington DC.
Oral and written comments accepted. For more information contact: Environmental Management Support at 301-589-0885,
or see Federal Register, Vol. 57, No. 61, 3-39-92, pgs: 10761-10763.

The hearings are being held by the US EPA’s Office of Research and Development (ORD) which is responsible for evaluating the evidence of dioxin on human and ecological health. The purpose of this meeting is “[t]o give a status and progress report to the public on all elements of the scientific reassessment of dioxin; to answer relevant questions from the public; and to receive oral and written comment from the public.” At this hearing the following people will help conduct the hearing: Dr. Peter Preuss, Director, Office of Technology Transfer & Regulatory Support, will give an overview and introduction; Dr. William Farland, Director, Office of Health & Environmental Assessment, will give an update of EPA’s Scientific Reassessment of Dioxin; Dr. Linda Birnbaum, Director, Environmental Toxicology Division, Health Effects Research Laboratory, Research Triangle Park, will give update on health research in support of the dioxin reassessment; Dr. George Lucier, Chief of the Laboratory of Biochemical Risk Analyses, National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences, Research Triangle Park, will present the development of dose-response models for evaluating the human health risks from exposures to dioxin-like compounds; Mr. John Schaum, Exposure Assessment Group, Office of Health & Environmental Assessment, will present information on estimating exposures to dioxin-like compounds; Dr. Philip Cook, Environmental Research Laboratory, Duluth, MN, will present an ecological risk characterization.

EPA VIDEO AVAILABLE ON 1st DIOXIN REASSESSMENT HEARING. Instead of a written transcript, the EPA videoed the 1st Public Hearing on EPA’s Reassessment of Dioxin held on 11-15-91 (see Waste Not #170) to help make the hearings more accessible to the public. This video is available to the public at each of the US EPA’s regional offices. This video is 5 hours, 49 minutes. Copies of this video can be obtained from the following individuals who comprise the Regional Scientists Program of the EPA’s Office of Research & Development. They were sent a copy of the video to share with the public. The name of the video is: “EPA’s Scientific Reassessment of Dioxin: 11-15-91 Public Hearing.” The 2nd Dioxin Public Hearing will also be videod.

EPA Regional Scientist Telephone # States under EPA region jurisdiction

Region 1: Thomas Waddell 617-565-3397 CT, ME, MA, NH, RI, VT.

Region 2: Patricia Lafornara 908-906-6988 NJ, NY, Puerto Rico, Virgin Islands

Region 3: Suzanne Lussier 215-597-1177 DE, DC, MD, PA, VA, WV

Region 4: John Montanari 404-347-7109 AL, FL, GA, KY, MS, NC, SC, TN

Region 5: Dorothy Patton 312-886-1019 IL, IN, MI, MN, OH, WI

Region 6: Norman Dyer 214-655-2252 AR, LA, NM, OK, TX

Region 7: Charles Hensley 913-551-7519 IA, KS, MO, NE

Region 8: David Smith 303-293-1475 CO, MT, ND, SD, UT, WY

Region 9: Winona Victery 415-744-1021 AZ, CA, HI, NV, American Samoa, Guam

Region 10: Randall Bruins 206-553-2146 AK, ID, OR, WA


In January 1992, Chemical Waste Management (CWM) revealed "that a key supervisor at the incinerator put phony labels on up to 100 barrels of toxic waste to evade safety requirements.
The company also acknowledges that two separate data files were kept on the inventory..."
According to Business Week, April 13, 1992, pgs. 76-77. “...The trouble in Chicago begin in 1987, when shift supervisor Jack F. Tursman was fired for alleged mishandling of a spill. Tursman, who is pursuing a wrongful-discharge suit against the company, claims his dismissal was in retaliation for alerting the parent company to possible crimes at the plant...Tursman's allegations are chilling. Under the direction of former operations manager Riad 'Ray' Alkhatib, Tursman says he was ordered to ‘burn as much as possible.' To avoid detection, Tursman says Alkhatib told control-room employees to disconnect pollution-monitoring devices. Gary Gregolini, the chief control-room operator during this period, agrees with Tursman's account....According to some ex-employees, the pressure to produce profits was intense. Says one of the plant's former Top managers: ‘The attitude was: ‘I don't want to know how you do it. Just keep turning in the results.' ' ...Saving money was paramount, say ex-employees. Sometimes they were even forced to skimp on such items as gloves and respirators. ‘It was a money factor,' said Gregolini. ‘Corporate said we were using too much equipment.' Akhil G. Desai, a former process-water technician at the plant, says he suffered severe reactions while raking chemical-laden sludge: ‘All of a sudden, my hands started bubbling.' Desai says he suggested ways to avoid contact with the sludge, such as shaking it in a mechanical hopper, but plant managers rejected his ideas because of cost....February, 1991- A container of chemicals explodes in the incinerator's kiln. CWM later agrees to pay $3.5 million to settle EPA charges in connection with the explosion, without admitting wrongdoing...March, 1988- CWM concedes to regulators that pollution-monitoring equipment was deliberately shut off at its Chicago incinerator by plant operators at least four times since 1986. In addition, it acknowledges that cancer causing PCB wastes were fed into the incinerator at rates higher than the plant's permit allowed." (For a copy of this report, please send a SASE to Waste Not.

WASTE NOT # 190 A publication of Work on Waste USA, published 48 times a year. Annual rates are: Groups & Non-Profits $50; Students & Seniors $35; Individual $40; Consultants & For-Profits $125; Canadian $US45; Overseas $65. Editors: Ellen & Paul Connett, 82 Judson Street, Canton, NY 13617. Tel: 315-379-9200. Fax: 315-379-0448.