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Years ago, a military base's sampling, testing, inspecting, and auditing of its groundwater was inadequate. So, what concern is this of anyone in southeastern Wisconsin?

From U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs Bulletin IB10-449 dated July 2015: From the 1950s through the 1980s, people serving or living at the U.S. Marine Corps Base Camp Lejeune, N.C. were potentially exposed to drinking water contaminated with industrial solvents, benzene, and other chemicals. This chemical exposure may have led to adverse health conditions.

From Federal Register Volume 81, No. 175 dated 9 Sept 2016: In the early 1980s, in response to new Environmental Protection Agency standards, the Marine Corps monitored its water quality for volatile organic compounds (VOCs). In 1982, the Marine Corps discovered elevated levels of VOCs trichloroethylene (TCE), a metal degreaser, and perchloroethylene (PCE), a dry cleaning agent, in two of the eight on-base water supply systems at Camp Lejeune.

Certainly, environmental rules and regulations have evolved since the 1980s and more stringent checks and balances exist today. Yet, most recently, Flint, Mich., is a reminder of mistakes made.

So, in 2018 (and going forward), there will be hundreds of new businesses and homes and thousands of new residents and workers coming to Racine County. With that influx, let's hope that applications and permits are thoroughly vetted; processes are ever transparent, and that air and water sampling, testing, inspecting, and auditing is never ceasing. Let's not in five or 10 years use Mount Pleasant, Flint, and Camp Lejeune in the same sentence.

Mike Scott

Mount Pleasant

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