2003 CPEO Military List Archive

From: CPEO Moderator <cpeo@cpeo.org>
Date: 12 Aug 2003 14:27:22 -0000
Reply: cpeo-military
Subject: [CPEO-MEF] Old waste taints Busch wildlife area
Old waste taints Busch wildlife area
By Sara Shipley

Dan Blecher used to think of Lake 34 as one of his favorite fishing
holes. That was before he found out that it's fed by a spring
contaminated with radioactive waste.

The picturesque tree-lined lake at the August A. Busch Memorial
Conservation Area in St. Charles County drains water from the nearby
Weldon Spring nuclear waste site. Tiny amounts of uranium and other
chemicals travel underground from the site and pop up in Burgermeister
Spring. The spring bubbles into the popular fishing lake, which has a
floating dock and boats to rent for $5 a day.

"Knowing that now, I'd probably not fish here again," said Blecher, 36,
of Maryland Heights, as he stood on the fishing dock Sunday evening.
"I'd find another spot to fish."

Many people who fish at the Busch wildlife area may be unaware of the
link between the lake and the nuclear waste site, because there are no
signs to warn them. Nor is there any plan to clean up the low levels of
contamination in the spring.

That's the way it would stay under a plan proposed by the U.S.
Department of Energy that will be discussed at a public meeting
Wednesday night in St. Charles County.

The agency says that someone could drink water occasionally from the
spring with practically no cancer risk.

The agency's ground water plan is the final piece in a $900 million
cleanup of the old Weldon Spring site, where workers made explosives and
processed uranium for nuclear weapons.

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