Monday, June 28, 2010

Dead Duck Lake

by Adrienne Anderson

Note there's nary a peep in this Sunday's Denver Post article about the fact that the lake water source is partially treated sewage effluent, laced with Superfund site contaminants.  This creates an ideal breeding ground for all sorts of harmful bacteria to flourish, while at the same time, chemicals in the new "Lowry Lakewater" would weaken the immune systems of healthy birds and other critters, making them more susceptible to whatever harmful organisms exist in this lake environment.

Why has the Denver Post ducked this important component to this story, and failed to inform its readers of this macabre mix and the background of this deal?

The Denver Post is one of the parties to the 1994 secret settlement deal with the City and County of Denver by which polluters paid some monies into a confidential fund - which even Denver City Council persons are not privy to - while foisting the poisons via a complex network of purple pipes from the Metro Wastewater plant in north Denver - at public expense - onto its own residents' public spaces, including City Parks' lakes and grounds.  You can read more about this confidential fund, the "Lowry Trust," in the 2nd story ("A Matter of Trust")  of Pulitzer Prize winning investigative reporter Eileen Welsome's three part series, "Dirty Secrets," published in April and May 2001.  See attachment.  Democracy Now! reported on this in 2005.

The Denver Post prior to 1980 dumped its toxic printing inks and solvents at Lowry Landfill, and which in those years typically include highly carcinogenic and persistent PCBs, since banned by the EPA.

The City and County of Denver, with this clear conflict of interest as one of the parties to this unprecedented agreement, cannot talk about this with any credibility.

By the way, citizens and farm/labor/student and environmental groups protested this deal back since learning of it in 1996, and tried to stop its implementation to flush dangerous Lowry Landfill contaminated water offsite.  Despite unanimous public opposition, the deal was implemented and the flush began in 2001.  In 2004, Denver Water began "recycling" this water at ratepayers expense, again, despite public opposition.

This lake should be renamed:  "Lake Lowry" or, perhaps more fitting, "Dead Duck Lake."

Adrienne Anderson; Metro Wastewater Board member, 1996-1998 University of Colorado Environmental Studies faculty, 1993 - 2005


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