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Elmira High School shows contamination according to survey


Environmental advocates claim a survey of Elmira High School showing contaminants has been hidden for nearly three decades.

Toxics targeting president Walter Hang says the chemicals include World War Two explosive material, toxic heavy metals, mercury and lead.

Hang believes the state DEC hasn’t done a sufficient job cleaning up contaminated soil. That's a notion the DEC rejects.

Hang believes a comprehensive cleanup should start right now.

“There shouldn’t be any more unanswered questions about the contamination at this site,” said Hang. “I mean it’s just inexplicable why the authorities sat on this report and didn’t require comprehensive clean up literally for 25 years.”

“The premise that that report was published in 1988 and we sat on it for 25 or 30 years is just patently false,” said Basil Seggos. “That report served as the basis for all the work that we’ve been doing for 30 years. Literally 30 years. We have some staff here that has been on this for decades.”

An agreement to clean up the property was reached four years ago.

Several meetings have been held in recent weeks looking at cleanup options for the high school.