Documents Expose Decades of Govt. Coverup of Toxic Chemicals Contamination

A group of concerned mothers from the St. Louis, Missouri, suburbs have spearheaded the cleanup of hazardous sites for years, which certain government figures have allegedly concealed for generations.

According to Karen Nickel, co-founder of Just Moms STL, the Manhattan Project isn’t particularly well-known in the city.  In 2013, Nickel and her neighbor Dawn Chapman established the group to make everyone aware.

Developed in secret during WWII, the Manhattan Project produced the first atomic weapons.

Over many years, the two mothers combed through hundreds of records, which showed that those responsible for disposing of hazardous trash in Missouri probably were aware that the crew had mismanaged those substances.

The Radiation Exposure Compensation Act expires this year, but Sen. Josh Hawley (R-Mo.) is actively working to prolong and expand it. This bill would allow government compensation for anyone claiming to have been harmed by chemical exposure in St. Louis and elsewhere.

According to Hawley, Missouri, Kentucky, and Tennessee were all uranium processing sites. He thinks that the amount of testing was considerably higher than previously thought. New records revealing the government’s complete awareness and deceit about the contamination that plagued the creek and caused health problems revealed the full depth of the Manhattan Project in the ’80s and ’90s.

Among the papers were confidential memoranda from the nuclear weapons processing firm Mallinckrodt Chemical Works, which the government had contracted. The files also included government agency samples and tests and caution that the locations where the chemicals were found could not be considered stable.

Concerns about health and safety arose with the closure of the St. Louis facility that handled uranium for the very first sustained nuclear chain reaction.

Workers at the airport noted that the K-65 drums were deteriorating in an internal document from 1949. The drums were placed along a creek in St. Louis County. At first, the federal government left the hazardous waste out in the open, exposed to the weather.  Contamination was a health threat to employees working with the K-65 material, especially in broken barrels, as underlined in the document.

Officials from the Army Corps of Engineers said the complexity of their cleaning tasks today is due to the decades-long floods.

According to advocates and politicians like Hawley, the cleaning should go more quickly.

The EPA claims it has been keeping the public informed about environmental cleanups via social media and its website.