GE Challenges EPA's Housatonic River Cleanup Plan

Oct 30, 2015

General Electric is pushing back against the EPA’s intended final cleanup plan for the Housatonic River whose waters were contaminated by the company’s former Pittsfield facility.

GE has decided to fight the EPA’s 13-year, $613 million cleanup plan for the so-called “Rest of the River” portion extending more than 100 miles south of Pittsfield. The EPA’s Jim Murphy says the dispute resolution was expected.

“We will be getting back to GE early next week to have initial talks about how we move forward, meeting logistics and whose going to be talking,” Murphy said. “It’s really just the next step in the process.”

Murphy says the resolution discussion is set out as a 20-day period. Environmental groups have said the EPA’s plan doesn’t do enough to remove the polychlorinated biphenyls GE dumped into the river until the chemical was banned in 1977.

The EPA doesn’t expect work to begin for at least two years.