Make sure the District Deparment of the Environment hears your voice - here's how to submit comments on the plan to remove toxics from the river.

Tuesday, February 25, 2014 - 4:40pm

The Anacostia River suffers from many forms of pollution, but perhaps the most difficult to fix is toxic compounds in the riverbed. These compounds have a variety of sources, some from industrial uses long ago and some recent. The compounds, such as poly-aromatic hydrocarbons (PAH) and poly-chlorinated biphenyls (PCB), are ingested by fish and, if humans eat the fish, may cause cancer and other diseases. 

Before a solution can be implemented, we must first understand the scope of the problem. The District will complete a Remedial Investigation (RI) of the toxics and conduct a Feasibility Study(FS) to explore a variety of solutions. Once the RI/FS is done, the District and those responsible for the pollution will work together to implement the plans to remove all of the toxic material.

Take Action

The District of Columbia has recently released the “work plan” that describes how they will conduct the Remedial Investigation of the toxics in the Anacostia riverbed sediment. There are a few aspects that Anacostia Riverkeeper would like to see improved.  The District is currently accepting comments provided by residents on ways they would like to see the plan improved.

You can email your comments to the District Department of the Environment by clicking here.

If the first email link doesn't work, copy and paste the below comments into the body of this email link.

Please complete this by MONDAY MARCH 3rd! 

Communicate to the Mayor that you think it’s important to perform the RI/FS and remove the toxics from the river. We have identified a few flaws in the work plan that we encourage you to mention in your comments to the Mayor. Your comments could read something like this:

My name is _______ and I am a resident of _______.

I strongly support the District of Columbia’s effort to conduct a Remedial Investigation and Feasibility Study of toxics in the Anacostia estuary. Removing these toxics are important to me because ___________ (I would like to fish, swim, paddle, picnic, without fear of toxics or risk to my or my family’s health)

I want to be able to freely enjoy the Anacostia as soon as possible, therefore I request the following changes be incorporated into the Remedial Investigation workplan:

·      A detailed timeline that will require the investigation to be complete by 2017.

·      An expedited process for the executive branch to review documents.

·      Beginning the feasibility study as soon as field work for the remedial investigation is underway so both studies proceed simultaneously.

·      Immediately applying for NPS and US Army Corps permits.

I am excited that the District is working on a solution to municipal separate stormwater pollution and combined sewage overflow pollution. Both of these solutions should work in concert with the toxic sediment project in order to fully achieve a fishable swimmable Anacostia.