Contamination in the Hudson

November 11, 2011
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The Hudson River is filled with PCB (Polychlorinated Biphenyls). PCB’s are an environmental problem that some people feel it cannot be fixed on its own; some feel that needs to help in order to clean the water in the Hudson River. General Electric is a company that is being accused of dumping over 500,000 pounds of odorless, colorless toxins into the Hudson River. These chemicals in the water, PCB’s are suspected of possibly causing reproductive disorders, male sterility, and birth defects in humans. They may also cause liver dysfunction, digestive disorders, chloracne, headaches, and fatigue.


General Electrics is a company based on improving everyday usage such as light bulbs, electrical equipment, oil & paint formulations, etc. General Electric is one of the main reasons why PCB exists in the Hudson River. According to the article, “PCB Contamination of the Hudson,” Two General Electric’s plants at Fort Edward and Hudson Falls have dumped over 500,000 pounds of toxics that are colorless and odorless over a thirty-year period before they were ordered to stop by New York State in 1977. Some feel General Electric is responsible for this problem because General Electric dumped the most amount of waste into the Hudson River! General Electric needs to take more responsibility and clean up after them; if they don’t clean the Hudson River will be filled with debris and could cause sickness to the people that breath in the air or even eat the fish. According to the document, fish consumption poses the greatest threat to human health. The local fish industry has declined 90% due to the Hudson River contamination. The Hudson River affects everyone due to local populations from the release of PCB’s in the air and from the presence of drinking water. This is the General Electric’s entire fault because they polluted the Hudson River and is endangering their customers and where they live (if they live in Manhattan).


General Electrics is not the main reasons why PCB now exists in the Hudson River today. According to the article, “PCB Contamination of the Hudson,” General Electrics was allowed to put toxics into the Hudson according to the New York State Law. However, the New York State Law banned putting any more toxins into the Hudson River in 1977. Therefore General Electric is not guilty of putting toxics into the Hudson River after the date of 1977. Although customers are still buying the products that the General Electric Company manufactures. Instead of toxins, sewage was put in the Hudson River; everyone puts in wastes that they don’t want. The people that bought the products are accountable for their actions. Therefore, the General Electric Company is not guilty of the left over toxic wastes that were put into the Hudson, but naturally the customer’s fault for buying the General Electric products. The negative side about cleaning out the Hudson River with chemicals is that chemicals would still be in the Hudson with even more toxins. Another negative side about cleaning out the Hudson is that not all toxins would be cleaned out, their would still be harmful toxins that would hurt the fish industry in the Hudson and also the pollution in the air. According to the article “PCB’s Contamination of the Hudson River; is the river cleaning itself’ Can Bacteria Destroy PCB’s.”


General Electric should not clean out the Hudson River because the toxins that were in the Hudson allowed the company to dispose of the left over toxins they used. “PCB Contamination of the Hudson,” General Electrics was allowed to put toxics into the Hudson according to the New York State Law. However, the New York State Law banned putting any more toxins into the Hudson River in 1977. The General Electrics did not dispose of the toxins after 1977 according to “PCB’s Contamination of the Hudson River; is the river cleaning itself’ Can Bacteria Destroy PCB’s.” However the customers that bought the products dumped the leftovers of the product into the Hudson without even thinking about what could happen to the environment. The customers also dumped in their sewage according to the article “Dredging up the Sordid History.” Therefore the General Electric should not help clean out the Hudson River. Merely it’s the customer’s own fault for dumping their sewage into the Hudson. They should be taking more responsibility than the General Electric. The General Electric Company had followed the rule obeying the New York State law. However the customers did not obey and continued dumping in their wastes, according to the article “Dredging up the Sordid History.”


The General Electric Company is not guilty of their actions but merely the citizens who bought the products, the New York State Law. General Electric’s should not clean out the Hudson River, but the customers that bought the products that were manufactured. This treacherous event was everyone’s fault, its not even possible the amount of waste put into the Hudson that GE is accused of. General Electrics is not guilty because GE put the chemicals in the Hudson before 1977. In 1977, the New York State Law banned putting any more toxins or sewage in the year 1977. One way to prevent this incident from happening is to install surveillance cameras.





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