Town is not being open about PCB risks

FI-Letter-to-the-EditorTo the Editor

Polychlorinated biphenyl (PCB) is a chemical compound so deadly its manufacture and use have been banned worldwide.

Lethal concentrations of PCBs were discovered on Greenwich High School grounds while building a new auditorium (MISA). The Board of Education and the town of Greenwich issued a joint “Risk Assessment” last week.

Consider this: The town says PCBs are as safe as water. The Board of Education told parents their children could eat PCB-laden soil for 30 years without suffering ill effects. Now the town says only construction workers face potential danger from PCBs.

But chlorine (CL) is a deadly element. Chlorine kills every living thing. Every PCB molecule contains chlorine atoms. PCBs stick to everything — except water. The human body has no mechanism to get rid of PCBs stuck to internal and external tissue.

PCBs accumulate in all humans for our entire lives. That’s what makes them so dangerous. The more PCBs clinging to our bodies, the greater the potential for harm. PCBs cause non-Hodgkin lymphoma, a frequently fatal form of cancer. PCBs cause birth defects. Children born near Love Canal suffered a 50% birth defect rate. Their children also suffer a 50% birth defect rate. PCBs cause severe acne.

Children should never be exposed to PCBs. The sooner PCBs start to accumulate in a child, the greater the risk of severe acne, birth defects and cancer. Girls are specifically at risk. The more PCBs in a young woman’s body, the more likely her children will be born with birth defects.

Is this a risk you want to take with your children?

Bill Effros
Greenwich

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