NRDC Hails EPA Decision on Hudson River Cleanup as Triumph of Science Over Cynicism

Statement of Frances Beinecke, NRDC Executive Director

New York (August 1, 2001) - "We applaud EPA Administrator Whitman for standing by science and her staff in holding General Electric accountable for contaminating the Hudson River for over 30 years.

"The decision to proceed with EPA's proposed dredging plan is a triumph of public health over public relations. It tells GE that polluters must pay and signals Superfund polluters everywhere that this EPA will not let them off the hook.

"It took four senators, the majority of the New York and New Jersey congressional delegation, Governor Pataki, and the entire environmental community to counter GE's money and influence. We applaud Mrs. Whitman for facing GE down.

"While the Whitman plan's stepped approach may move slower than we had wished, we are pleased with EPA's overall decision. Scientists, environmentalists, and local communities will continue to be vigilant as the plan proceeds."

The Natural Resources Defense Council is a national, non-profit organization of scientists, lawyers and environmental specialists dedicated to protecting public health and the environment. Founded in 1970, NRDC has more than 500,000 members nationwide, served from offices in New York, Washington, Los Angeles and San Francisco.

Frances Beinecke, NRDC's Executive Director, or Sarah Chasis, Senior Attorney, can be reached for comment by calling NRDC at 212-727-4408 or 212-727-4475.