Friday, November 26, 2010
California Health Officials Deny Dump Causes Defects
State Environmental Protection Agency and Department of Public Health investigators were still unsure why 11 babies were born with physical deformities in Kettleman City between September 2007 and March 2010. Three of the babies died. Tests of water, air and soil; analysis of pesticides; and interviews with six of the affected families did not suggest a common cause for the health problems.
Residents believe the medical problems are linked to the nearby Waste Management Inc. hazardous waste facility, the largest landfill of its kind west of Louisiana and the only one in California licensed to accept cancer-causing polychlorinated biphenyls, or PCBs.
Waste Management has requested permits to expand the facility. State officials said a final decision on whether to grant the request will not be made until after completion of a final report on the investigation into the birth defects later this year. (L.A. Times, 11/23/2010)