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PCBs Remain in Schools Long After Ban
As many as 14 million students in more than 25,000 schools across the country are still being exposed to dangerous levels of PCBs (polychlorinated biphenyls), nearly four decades after the chemicals were banned by the U.S. government. This is the conclusion of a report recently issued by Harvard scientists that appeared on the website of the Environmental Working Group.
Not a Pretty Picture
Massachusetts Senator Edward Markey cited the study in a report he issued on Oct. 5, saying that 30 percent children may still face exposure to PCBs. The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) banned the chemicals in 1979, but more than 286 PCB contamination reports from 20 states have been sent to the EPA over the last 10 years.
PCBs are chemical compounds that were manufactured by Monsanto and used in a multitude of applications. For example, they were used in insulators, oils, caulks and much, much more. PCBs have been linked to not only cancer, but also problems affecting the thyroid as well as the neurological system. According to the EWG, Monsanto knew of the dangers of PCBs but chose to hide that information from the government as well as the public.
The primary author of the Harvard study said that people looking for PCBs in schools are very likely to find them across the country, and that it is “essential” that the chemicals be removed from our schools once and for all.
Baron & Budd has a long history of representing school districts as well as municipalities that have been affected by environmental contamination. We were one of the first law firms in the country to file a lawsuit against Monsanto for its role in contaminating school buildings. In addition, we are currently representing several cities that have suffered contamination in their water supplies and waterways.