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"Full Disclosure" --
An Essential Ingredient in Coal-tar Site Remediation

Since about 1990 much attention has been given to approximating the "risks" represented by all manner of geo-environmental threats to public health and safety, and to protection of the environment in general. In fact, the public and its elected and appointed officials have generally become quite comfortable when presented with "numbers" relating the relative "risks" associated with unremediated toxic substances, or, on the other hand, with the conditions proposed for remediation, by Responsible Parties.

Herein lies the "rub!"

"Risk Assessment" has become a lucrative field of consulting science and engineering, generally peopled by applied mathematicians who are adroit at plastering enough warm and fuzzy numbers that often are put forth as a means of "covering up" the real-science concerns about uncontrolled hazardous wastes sites.

Risk assessments are, in fact, "why worry" statements, usually concocted as a "word-walk" scenario explaining how you, the citizen, resident, worker, or visitor, to the site, remediated or unremediated, are highly unlikely to become the victim ("receptor") of toxic substances present or released from the uncontrolled hazardous waste site. Same applies to the explained benefits of the selected program of site remediation.

Truth should rule in these situations. The truth is available only when the unremediated site and its wastes are characterized in such a manner as to embrace "Full Disclosure." Only when you are presented with unassailable evidence of full disclosure can you believe that public health and environmental protection are receiving the best treatment afforded by professional geologists and professional engineers.

That topic is the subject of this Hatheway paper. When there are heroes present, they are the people who demand "Full Disclosure." Heroes can be any concerned person, but the public is protected by law by the performance of its Regulatory Geologists.

This paper is dedicated to the proper role of our environmental-protection guardians, through observance of the rights, obligations and privileges of our Regulatory Geologists. We should all demand Full Disclosure.

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Copyright 2019 by Dr. Allen W. Hatheway    All rights reserved.
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