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EPA Criticizes NJ's Monitoring of Contaminated Sites

Friday, August 28, 2009

The US Environmental Protection Agency is citing problems with how New Jersey's Department of Environmental Protection monitors thousands of contaminated sites. WNYC's Bob Hennelly has more.

REPORTER: The EPA Region two audit of New Jersey's DEP says the state lacks basic quality controls to ensure the accuracy of its testing and monitoring. As a result the EPA found "potentially significant vulnerabilities in how the DEP collected data to back up its own decision making". Bill Wolfe, is a former career DEP analyst, with the Public Employees for Environmental Responsibility.

WOLFE: The point of the audit is that the state has no basis to tell the public that they have the confidence that the decisions that they are making are really sound scientifically and actually protect the public health.

REPORTER: A DEP spokesperson says the agency is still reviewing the EPA findings. The federal review covers the time that current EPA Administrator Lisa Jackson was in charge of the New Jersey's DEP. Her office had no comment. For WNYC I'm Bob Hennelly.

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