2004 CPEO Military List Archive

From: CPEO Moderator <cpeo@cpeo.org>
Date: 5 Feb 2004 22:48:32 -0000
Reply: cpeo-military
Subject: Old munitions litter U.S. bases
Old munitions litter U.S. bases
Danger, pollution are big issues for military
By Stephanie Heinatz
February 4, 2004

Military bases across the country, including nine on the Peninsula and
three in South Hampton Roads, are polluted with used military munitions,
as well as unexploded bombs and artillery shells.

And there could be more.

The Defense Department doesn't know where all the contaminated areas
are, how to fully assess the danger and how much money it will cost to
remedy the problem or have a viable plan to address it, according to the
General Accounting Office, the investigative arm of Congress.

More than 15 million acres - several thousand on the Peninsula - of
closed military firing ranges on current and former U.S. military and
defense training bases are suspected of being, or are known to be,
contaminated with military munitions.

The worse-case scenario: Unexploded bombs could kill people who come in
contact with them.

The more-likely scenario: Chemicals seep out of the bombs and artillery
shells, then pollute groundwater.

In September 2002, the Defense Department identified 2,307 possible
sites nationwide.

Of those, 66 are in Virginia, and 11 are scattered across nine bases on
the Peninsula.

Two sites - Camp Hill in Newport News and the Oyster Point Storage area
- have been cleaned, but the nine others remain a threat.

This article can be viewed at:

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