1995 CPEO Military List Archive

From: WISE@whidbey.net
Date: 12 Jun 1995 09:24:54
Reply: cpeo-military
Subject: Re: Comments of RAB Workshop
Posting from WISE@whidbey.net (Whidbey Islanders for a Sound Environment)

The following is a response to both Merv Tano and David Keith

> The environmental 
>restoration activities at Fort Ord will someday be completed. The 
>Rocky Mountain Arsenal will also be eventually environmentally 
>restored. However, these will be replaced by other problems, other 
>environmental restoration issues, other "enemies" if you will. Your 
>and your community's immediate concern is Westover AFB, but your 
>children's may be an army facility in Georgia, a refinery in Texas or a 
>nuclear reactor in Arizona. 

In early review of Remedial Investigation data we were told by EPA that high
hits of 
toxic contamination immediately downstream from a county road and state highway 
were due to ongoing road contamination and therefore was not subject to CERCLA. 
As you might expect this was a point that was repeatedly visited until it
was finally 
admitted by EPA rep Nancy Harney that normal continuing practices on and off
base, i.e. 
airfield and road traffic were possibly contaminating the environment at
levels comparable with the worst "past practices." This was and remains a
defining moment for me of my nearly two years on the RAB.

> At present, RAB members have access to 
>technical consultants to decipher reports and studies. This is a fine 
>tactic for today. I do not think that it is an appropriate tactic ten 
>years from today. At that time I would like that technical consultant 
>to be my daughter who works for a community-based environmental 
>restoration organization and the project manager at the Air Force 
>Center for Environmental Excellence to be your son.

Not all RAB have access to technical assistance. The entire non-military
in the proximity of Naval Air Station Whidbey Island is probably under
30,000. This
community does not have a track record of independent action. WISE is an all
501 (c)(3) with 276 dues paying members -- the most likely candidate to
apply for an EPA TAG grant. In 1993 our board of directors did authorized
application for a Washington State Department of Ecology grant to satisfy
EPA matching fund requirement. The state grant was a 
much simpler process of application and still it took over one week of
volunteer time to research and process. When that application was denied,
the board of directors did not see a future in the EPA TAG grant. Our RAB
has had no Technical Assistance outside of EPA, DOE, the NAVY and its
>I think that the third set of issues faced by RABs is one of long-term 
>organizational and community development. I think that the question 
>the RABs have to confront is this: "Are the RABs ephemera, the 
>artifacts of which, fifty years from now, will be found in archives and 
>the activities of which are memorialized in dissertations and learned 
>journals, or will the RABs live on as an integral part of a new 
>paradigm for decision-making in the United States. 

Interesting to note that a RAB team building workshop identified the
continuance of the RAB 
or a RAB like Navy-civilian board to review on-going community and
environmental issues among its highest priority goals.

Bill Skubi
Whidbey Islanders for A Sound Environment
WISE/PO Box 773
Coupeville, WA 98239
(360) 678-6377 / FAX (360) 678-3247
e-mail: coho@whidbey.net

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