EPA adds Hoosick Falls Saint-Gobain plant to National Priorities List

July 31, 2017 06:19 PM

HOOSICK FALLS - The Environmental Protection Agency has added Saint-Gobain Performance Plastics in Hoosick Falls to the Superfund program's National Priorities List. The Superfund program cleans up the country's most complex and worst contamination. Now the federal government will be bringing its scientists and its lawyers.

Senator Chuck Schumer announced the news Monday morning at Albany Med.

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"This means simply one thing, the companies who created this mess are forced to clean it up," said Schumer, D-New York.

Judith Enck was the EPA's regional administrator when PFOA was discovered in Hoosick Falls water. She says this is great news for the village.

"This means the EPA can bring their expertise and their resources to cleaning up this toxic legacy. The federal supervision laws are very strong," said Enck.

Now, the EPA will begin mapping the PFOA pollution. Then coming up with a plan to clean it up. And eventually following through with a remedy.

New York's DEC already put Hoosick Falls on the state Superfund list. Commissioner Basil Seggos told us last week he intends to get back all the state money spent on cleanup.

If that includes a new water source for the village, Basil Seggos said DEC would even take Saint Gobain and Honeywell to court, to make them pay for it.

Enck says that new water source could come out of the federal Superfund.

"One might ask, why do we need to state and the federal government involved? It's because the pollution is so widespread and we need all hands on deck," said Enck.  

Michelle O'Leary lives on Hoosick Street. It's good news, taken with a grain of salt.

"I just know we're facing a long time of work and remedy, but I'm just happy at least we're starting that process," said O'Leary.

Enck says she doesn't think this cleanup will be done in less than ten years. She says it could cost the companies tens of millions or hundreds of millions of dollars.

More information:

EPA Superfund sites


WNYT Staff

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