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Hudson River PCB Dredging To Resume This Week

Dredging of the Hudson River

Dredging of the upper-Hudson River will resume Wednesday.

U.S. Environmental Protection Agency Regional Administrator Judith Enck said Monday that the fifth season of dredging for PCBs by General Electric will be spread out over 40 miles of the river north of Albany.

Judith Enck says the path of dredging this year will be logistically challenging because it includes a landlocked area near two dams that will require barges to transport material to the processing facility.

The EPA plans to dredge 350,000 cubic yards of contaminated sediment in this phase of the cleanup.

The Fairfield, Connecticut-based company agreed with the EPA to remove PCBs from a 40-mile stretch of river at a cost regulators estimate will be about $2 billion. Until 1977, GE discharged about 1.3 million pounds of PCBs into the river. They had been used as coolants in electrical equipment.

Dredging is expected to be complete as early as 2015, with an additional year of habitat planting and reconstruction.

The federal Superfund project began in 2009. It targets approximately 2.65 million cubic yards of PCB-contaminated sediment. About 70 percent has been removed.

The Associated Press contributed to this report. Copyright 2014.

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