|From:||CPEO Moderator <firstname.lastname@example.org>|
|Date:||5 Dec 2002 18:16:41 -0000|
|Subject:||[CPEO-MEF] Yuba site for homes, golf sits atop WWII explosives|
California Yuba site for homes, golf sits atop WWII explosives By Chris Bowman -- Bee Staff Writer Published 2:15 a.m. PST Wednesday, December 4, 2002Yuba County is considering putting more than 5,000 homes and a golf course atop a World War II-era combat range still laden with explosives, a prospect state environmental officials call highly risky.
The proposed Yuba Highlands development just east of Marysville would lie almost entirely within live-firing zones of the former Camp Beale, an Army training ground through the Korean War.
County officials said they approved a plan to develop the area 10 years ago with nary a warning from the Department of Defense. The site is believed to be a virtual minefield of unexploded bombs, rockets, grenades, mortar rounds and, possibly, chemical warfare agents.
Now, as county officials weigh whether to approve the first housing tract for this newly designated growth zone, the California Environmental Protection Agency is waving a red flag.
"If OE (ordnance and explosives) is mishandled or if appropriate safeguards are not in place, there is a potential for tragic results to occur," Cal-EPA official Ed Walker warned in a Nov. 13 letter to the county's planning department.
The Army recovered 500 potentially explosive munitions before returning 63,000 acres to civilian use in 1959. But the sweeps did not include buried ammo, according to U.S. Army Corps of Engineers documents. The military did not have the technology at that time to detect buried ordnance.
This article can be viewed at: http://www.sacbee.com/content/news/story/5460298p-6444728c.html ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
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