Gowanus Your Face Off
Gowanus, Brooklyn
The crack between two hipster neighborhoods, home to the now superfunded Canal, the flash point for the new 'Buy Local' and textile revolutions, & filled with brilliant bohemians. . . this is Gowanus & it’ll awesome your face off.

Feds give the 311 on Gowanus Canal Cleanup

If you didn’t know your friendly neighborhood Canal was reviewed this past year by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to figure out a way [if] for it to be cleaned. The Superfunded site mocked and teased throughout New York and now the country has been a smelling polluted mess since the industrial revolution, and the butt of many ‘Bog of Eternal Stench’ jokes in recent years. During and since the 19th century companies and the City of New York have dumped chemicals and sewage (rain) run off into the once highly trafficked waterway. The EPA put out a plan Tuesday that maps out several plans on how to clean the Canal, the publics health risk, and the cost for the various plans. You can read it here: Feasibility Study Gowanus Canal

Most of the EPA’s options involve dredging the hell out of the sediment in the Canal, which has been done throughout the Canal’s history. The EPA’s options go a little further that previous ‘dedges’ by digging deeper and more thoroughly. One of the most interesting parts of the plan is to Cap (isolation layer and armor layer) the Canal. This would involve lots of new sand and other new sediment to make what is essentially a barrier between the dangerous chemical and the animal life above. It’s basically the same kind of way we deal with a nuclear weapons.

But is the Canal really that dangerous? Well, yes…  yes the CANAL IS DANGEROUS to things that are living. In the EPA’s report the usually themes are mentioned: don’t eat anything from the Canal and exposure to the soil & water is not good for humans due to the pollutants in the water. The smell should be a good indication for everyone that it’s not a good idea to eat things in or around the Canal or to take a quick dip in the Canal’s water.

Cost for all this? Lot’s and lot’s of money. Depending on the plan it could cost $350-450 million dollars. Since the Canal is Superfunded this cost is to be passed onto the top polluters of the Canal, which most notable are National Grid and of course the City of New York.

Some will say the options go to far; others will say they don’t go far enough. The EPA is planning on having public forums to get the communities feed back of the options laid out in the plan. The EPA intends to finalize the course of action by the end of this year.

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