MCHM

Chemical Spill
1:27 pm
Thu July 10, 2014

Study: MCHM Could Be More Toxic Than Previously Thought

Credit AP

  A new study shows a chemical that spilled into West Virginia's biggest drinking water supply in January could be more toxic than a previous test indicated. But the researcher behind the study cautions there are differences between his tests and earlier studies.

University of South Alabama researcher Dr. Andrew Whelton released the findings Thursday from crude MCHM toxicity tests on freshwater fleas.

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Health & Science
5:36 pm
Thu June 26, 2014

CDC Denies West Virginia's Request for More Animal Tests on MCHM

Credit Centers for Disease Control & Prevention

  Federal officials aren't granting a state request for more animal tests for a chemical that spilled into West Virginia's largest drinking water supply in January.

In February, Gov. Earl Ray Tomblin asked for additional tests to determine the long-term health effects of consuming, breathing or coming in contact with the spilled chemical, crude MCHM.

In a March 13 letter made public Thursday, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention told state health officials it believed long-term effects were unlikely. CDC described plans only to track trends with resources like birth defects surveillance, cancer registries and health systems data.

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Chemical Spill
10:32 am
Thu June 5, 2014

Researchers Recommend Testing of 720 Homes Affected by Elk River Spill

An independent research group suggests sampling water in 720 West Virginia homes for a chemical that spilled into the water supply in January.

Researchers from the West Virginia Testing Assessment Project, or WV TAP, say that number of homes would be "statistically defensible" in determining whether affected households are chemical-free.

The group sampled 10 homes in February for crude MCHM using state taxpayer dollars. Each contained chemical traces, but the concentrations were about 675 times weaker than what federal officials call safe to drink. The report says levels of the chemical have continued to decline since the spill.

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Chemical Spill
12:37 pm
Thu May 22, 2014

CDC Explains Rationale for MCHM Drinking Water Standard

Credit AP

In a letter to Congresswoman Shelley Moore Capito, federal health officials say they thought their drinking water standard established after the Elk River chemical spill would have protected West Virginias from other forms of contact. 

A Centers for Disease Control and Prevention official says drinking the contaminated water was the primary exposure they were concerned with when forming their safety threshold. CDC director Thomas Frieden says consumption was associated with the most significant health effects.

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12:55 pm
Mon May 19, 2014

MCHM Detected at Three Coal Preparation Plants

Lead in text: 
As Dave Boucher of The Charleston Daily Mail reports, MCHM--the same chemical involved in a January spill that tainted the water supply of some 300,000 West Virginians--has been found in discharges from three coal prep plants in the state: Delbarton Mining in Mingo County, Wolfrun Mining in Barbour County, and Marfork Coal near the border of Boone and Raleigh counties.
The same chemical that contaminated drinking water for 300,000 West Virginians has shown up again, this time in the discharged materials from three coal preparation plants in the state. In each case, the stream that receives the discharge eventually supply a water utility.
Chemical Spill
7:21 am
Thu May 1, 2014

EPA to Gauge Safety of Inhaling MCHM

Credit AP

  Months after a chemical spilled into 300,000 West Virginians' water source, federal officials want to determine at what level people can safely breathe the chemical's fumes.

Over the next few months, the Environmental Protection Agency will work on detecting crude MCHM in the air and creating a safety standard for inhaling it.

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Inhaling Chemical
1:28 pm
Wed April 23, 2014

Capito Asking Questions About Spill

U.S. Rep. Shelley Moore Capito is asking federal health officials for more information about skin contact and inhaling a chemical that spilled in January.

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Chemical Leak
4:35 pm
Mon April 14, 2014

WVAM Says MCHM Not Detected After Carbon Filters Changed

Credit Foo Conner / Flickr

West Virginia American Water said new tests show no signs of MCHM from water filtered through two newly replaced carbon filters.

The company began changing out the 16 activated carbon filters in the Charleston plant on April 1.

In a release this Monday, WVAM said 16 water samples taken throughout the filtration process at that location returned non-detect levels of MCHM.

The results came from Eurofins Lancaster Laboratories, Inc. in Lancaster, Pa., which WVAM said is testing the water at the 0.38 parts per billion level.

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Chemical Leak
7:28 pm
Fri April 11, 2014

Wastewater from Freedom Spill Sent to Ohio, North Carolina

Credit AP

Wastewater containing a chemical that spilled into the water supply for 300,000 West Virginians is heading to Ohio and North Carolina.
 
State Department of Environmental Protection spokeswoman Kelley Gillenwater says Freedom Industries started sending wastewater to an Ohio underground injection control well site this week.
 
The material was vacuumed out of Freedom's tanks and the Elk River. Freedom was storing it at its Nitro facility.
 

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Environment
6:59 pm
Sat March 29, 2014

Review Of West Virginia Water Finds More Work To Be Done

Transcript

KELLY MCEVERS, HOST:

A group of independent researchers has found that the chemical crude MCHM is still present in some West Virginia homes. That's the coal-cleaning chemical that spilled into the Elk River back in January out of a storage tank operated by the company Freedom Industries. The spill contaminated drinking water for hundreds of thousands of people. The research group was formed by West Virginia's governor after public pressure.

Dave Mistich of West Virginia Public Broadcasting reports on the research group's latest findings.

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Chemical Leak
10:01 am
Wed March 26, 2014

WV TAP, Virginia Tech Studies Differ on Spilled Chemical Odor Analysis

Credit Nikthestoned / wikimedia Commons

A Virginia Tech study says a chemical that spilled into 300,000 West Virginians' water supply in January stops smelling at a level 47 times stronger than other researchers found.
 
The group that discovered the lower chemical odor level questioned the Virginia Tech team's methods.
 
The Virginia Tech group said in a news release that it detected the chemical in the air with specialized instruments. It used a gas law to calculate the corresponding odor threshold in water.
 

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Chemical Leak
11:09 am
Fri February 7, 2014

West Virginia University Continues Testing for MCHM Contamination

Filling Up — Jason Fillhart, from West Virginia Water Research Institute, leans off a boat dock to collect a water sample.
Credit Raymond Thompson / WVU

West Virginia University researchers say, in an effort to fulfill their land-grant institution mission of serving communities in the state, they stepped up to begin a research project to study the Elk River Chemical spill. University funds as well as a grant from the National Science Foundation have provided seed money to immediately collect perishable data to conduct this study.

Lead Researchers:

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Chemical Leak
11:21 am
Wed February 5, 2014

Freedom Industries Moving Spilled Materials to Pennsylvania

Credit Aaron Payne / West Virginia Public Broadcasting

Thousands of gallons of the chemical that spilled into 300,000 people's water supply are leaving West Virginia and heading to Pennsylvania.
 
     Freedom Industries expected to move 3,500 gallons of crude MCHM from its Nitro facility to a coal facility in Pennsylvania on Tuesday.

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2:22 pm
Thu January 23, 2014

Former West Virginia Miner: We've Been Dumping Those Chemicals In The Water For Decades

Lead in text: 
Former coal miner Joe Stanley says he lost his job after a conflict with management, when he, as union president, demanded to know more about the chemicals that were being used in the mine. "I watched the coal industry poison our water for years. Now they're telling us not to drink the water? We've been dumping this stuff into unlined ponds and into old mines for years," he says. One of those chemicals, Stanley says, was MCHM.
When up to 7,500 gallons of toxic 4-methylcyclohexane methanol (MCHM) spilled into the Elk River in West Virginia, leaving 300,000 people without tap water for around a week, former miner Joe Stanley was well prepared. He hadn't been drinking the water for years. Stanley, 64, worked at West Virginia's Marrowbone Coal Mine from 1981 to 1996.
6:03 pm
Tue January 21, 2014

It Wasn't Just Crude MCHM: Elk River Spill Included Another Chemical

Lead in text: 
As Ken Ward of The Charleston Gazette reports, officials with the U.S. Chemical Safety Board say a product known as "PPH" was included in the the January 9 spill.
  • Source: Wvgazette
  • | Via: The Charleston Gazette
Elk River spill included another chemical CHARLESTON, W.Va. -- Federal and state investigators learned today that an additional chemical that wasn't previously identified was in the tank that leaked on Jan. 9 at the Freedom Industries tank farm just upstream from West Virginia American Water's regional drinking water intake.