Scranton Times Recap: DOH Meeting

State, federal officials discuss Keystone landfill report



It did, however, note that four chemicals were detected at one-day concentrations that can have temporary negative health effects — including mild irritation of the eyes, throat, nose, skin and respiratory tract — on pregnant woman, children, older people, individuals with respiratory problems and other “sensitive populations.”

Calling the scope of the report “extremely limited,” Dunmore resident Janet Brier questioned its overall relevancy.

“By your own admission, this is a very limited study,” she said. “You didn’t take any data during the summer months, July, August, September, when ... the air quality is completely different. You didn’t take any air quality samples in the landfill. ... My question to you is, what’s the relevancy of this study really?”

The report explored what chemicals residents may be exposed to and what health effects those chemicals can have, state epidemiologist Sharon Watkins, Ph.D., said.

Mid Valley School Director Donna Dixon, a former elementary principal in the district, said it’s her job to keep students safe, but questioned how she can do that if the air they breathe can be harmful.

“On any given day, we have hundreds of children playing on our playground and on our fields,” Dixon said. “To know that their health can be at risk under the current conditions sent a shock through our district. This begs the question: how much worse would it be if the expansion is allowed?”