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Irish Examiner - 31-10-05
Dioxin level double in Ringaskiddy

Dear Sir,

The report published by the Environmental Protection Agency 18th October concerning the reduction of dioxin in our air seemed like a good news story. Paul Cunningham’s report on RTE News seemed to confirm it. Dioxin levels were down nationally.

However, closer scrutiny of the report showed that in fact the levels in Ringaskiddy have doubled since the last piece of research was conducted in 2000. This wasn’t mentioned in the EPA’s press release and therefore didn’t get mentioned on the RTE News.

When the author of the report was asked why there were increased levels in Ringaskiddy he said he wasn’t sure, but there was an increase in house building in the area! There have in fact been less than 50 houses built in the last four years. Later the EPA changed this and said they didn’t know what had caused the increase in Dioxin levels but it was only one sample and we shouldn’t rely on it!

Well the EPA cant have it both ways, if they want to claim the credit for the good news that dioxins levels are down nationally, they must be equally concerned with any variation of these results, if only to maintain the integrity of their research.

However what concerns me more is that we know from the EPA research that one of the sources of dioxin is incineration and that there are already five incinerators operating in the harbour. The EPA can’t account for these elevated levels of dioxin in the Ringaskiddy area even though this is their responsibility. How then can we have any confidence in their in their ability to make a prudent rational decision in relation to the waste liciences for 100,000 toxic waste incinerator and 100,000 household incinerator. They have shown they are unconcerned about the results in Ringaskiddy despite not knowing why the levels of dioxin have increased. They have obviously written it off as an area worthy of further investigation.

It is unclear what the motives of the EPA are but we can be certain guarding our health and wellbeing, not to mention our environment are not on top of their agenda.

Mary Hurley,
Gort na Fleur,
High Road,
Cobh.

     

Cork Harbour Alliance for a Safe Environment
Bishop's Road, Cobh, Co. Cork
Tel - 021 481 5564      Email - info@chaseireland.org
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