Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Pollution fouls Florida aquifer

December 15, 2008 - An investigation into a plume of cancer-causing chemicals under 30 blocks of downtown Orlando shows it is one of the state's most serious toxic messes and probably the hardest to clean up.

Investigators, who are nearly finished with their probe, have traced the pollution to a long-defunct refinery that for 70 years heated coal to manufacture a synthetic version of natural gas for lights, stoves and heating.

Hazardous waste left by the former plant in the Callahan neighborhood on West Robinson Street isn't thought to pose any immediate threat to existing drinking-water wells even though much of the contamination penetrated to an extraordinary depth.

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