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Audio Feature: Hudson River stories

Jun 08, 2018 9:55 am
Here are some stories from the Hudson River this week. Click here to hear an audio version of this report. (4:45)

The Stevens Institute reports temperatures this week in the Hudson River at Schodack Island were between 68 and 71 degrees, about the same as last week.

Brian Nearing reports in the Albany Times Union that there will be more dredging of PCBs and other industrial chemicals from the Hudson River this summer, but it is not General Electric dredging. Instead, PCBs will be scooped out of the river near a former Rensselaer dye factory under a $41 million cleanup project that is expected to take three years. The dangerous chemicals are from a former BASF facility on Riverside Avenue calls. About 38,700 cubic yards of river bottom or about 3,800 dump truck loads are going to leave the river, according to the state Department of Environmental Conservation. BASF will first install more than 500 feet of new steel bulkhead to strengthen a seawall along the river. Then the dredging begins later in the summer. PCB levels near the site reach up to 270 parts per million, while the safe standard is 1 ppm.Read the full story in the Albany Times Union.

Debby Mayer is reporting for The Columbia Paper the Amtrak proposal to install fences and gates along its right of way at the Hudson River, between Stuyvesant and Rhinecliff, has been slowed as a result of public opposition to the project. The railroad cited safety concerns as the reason for installing the barrier, but Germantown and other communities that border the river were concerned the project would block access for recreation, fishing, and fire protection and rescue. A public comment period began in March and ended May 1. A meeting on the issue, organized by U.S. Rep. John Faso, took place on April 24, with representatives of Amtrak, the state Department of State, state Department of Transportation, along with state and local officials. As a result of that meeting, Amtrak agreed to hold informational meetings with each affected municipality to explain their fencing plan in detail and to hear from various riverfront stakeholders. Those meetings have yet to be scheduled. Read the full story in The Columbia Paper.

The Mid-Hudson News Network reports that New York Senator Charles Schumer wants federal officials to “quickly finalize” volatility standards of rail shipments of crude oil. Schumer sounded off on the issue to the departments of Transportation and Energy after new data from the US Energy Information Administration emerged about crude oil shipments. “It finds that the amount of crude by rail moving throughout New York was declining, now is back on the rise,” Schumer said. “We have a bunch of accidents in the last few years… everyone of them has had Bakken crude in it, and the Federal Railroad Administration has cited high vapor pressure as one of the potential causes of these kinds of crashes.” CSX route maps show crude oil shipments move from western New York through the Mohawk Valley to the Capital Region and then south along the Hudson River to refineries in New Jersey and the Philadelphia area. Currently, crude oil prices are $18.13 higher than a year ago. Read the full story at the Mid-Hudson News Network.