: News

Filed Under:

Environmental Groups Accuse Fenty Administration Of Stifling Anacostia Rehab

Play associated audio
Three of the Anacostia River's "toxic hot spots" are getting federal funding to lead clean-up efforts.
http://www.flickr.com/jenniferboyer
Three of the Anacostia River's "toxic hot spots" are getting federal funding to lead clean-up efforts.

By Patrick Madden

Some environmental groups are accusing the Fenty Administration of holding back the clean-up effort on the Anacostia river.

The environmentalists call them 'toxic hot spots:' six sites along the Anacostia river that are so contaminated, so full of toxins and pollutants that in one spot, for example, two-thirds of the catfish have cancerous lesions.

Three of these sites have been designated 'Superfund' sites, that means federal government has been tapped to lead the clean-up effort.

But the other three haven't, and Brent Bolin with the Anacostia Watershed Society, says the mayor's office has not designated the spots because of pressure from developers.

"Several of the sites are really ripe for redevelopment and so there is a question of whether these sites will be stigmatized by a Superfund listing," says Bolin.

And the Superfund label, Bolin says, would send the value of the project plummeting.

But Christof Tulou, acting director of the District's Department of the Environment, says its sometimes easier and quicker to handle the clean-up effort directly.

"We feel that in direct negotiations with the responsible parties, the district government can get to the nitty gritty and get these things done quicker," says Tulou.

Tulou says a Superfund listing can be a long, drawn out process with a lot of red tape.

But Tulou doesn't entirely disagree with the environmentalists. He says the 'Superfund' label stifles redevelopment, and it's something his department takes into consideration when deciding which toxic spots make the list.

NPR

No Longer Omar: Actor Michael K. Williams On Lucky Breaks And Letting Go

Over the course of his career, Williams says he's learned to separate himself from his characters (like The Wire's Omar). In HBO's The Night Of, he plays a powerful prison inmate named Freddy.
NPR

#FoodPorn, Circa 1600s: Then And Now, It Was More About Status Than Appetite

A new study of old masters finds that capturing and showing off decadent and expensive meals is a decidedly old-fashioned practice. Like today's Instagrammers, it was all about projecting an image.
WAMU 88.5

The Legality Of Restoring Virginia Voting Rights

Virginia's governor is bypassing the commonwealth's Supreme Court ruling and restoring felon voting rights individually. Kojo examines Terry McAuliffe's move with a legal expert.

NPR

The Big Internet Brands Of The '90s — Where Are They Now?

Verizon's purchase of Yahoo will close the book on one of the oldest Internet companies. What happened to the other famous '90s brands, like GeoCities, Netscape and CompuServe? A nerdy remembrance.

Leave a Comment

Help keep the conversation civil. Please refer to our Terms of Use and Code of Conduct before posting your comments.