America’s Top 10 Most-Polluted Waterways
Within the overall waste, the researchers identified 1.5 million pounds of carcinogens, 626,000 pounds of chemicals linked to developmental disorders and 354,000 pounds of those associated with reproductive problems.
We have come a long way with efforts to clean up America’s waterways, rivers, and lakes, but there is still a lot of work to be done — especially around point sources like these on the list (worst = 1):
- AK Steel Corp (Rockport Works) - Indiana - Ohio River - 24,305,396 lb/yr
- US Army Radford Army Ammunition Plant - Virginia - New River - 12,006,602 lb/yr
- AK Steel Corp Coshocton Works - Ohio - Muskingum River - 5,500,000 lb/yr
- Dupont Chambers Works - New Jersey - Delaware River - 5,354,113 lb/yr
- Tyson Fresh Meats Inc WWTP - Nebraska - Missouri River - 4,623,500 lb/yr
- Cargill Meat Solutions Corp - Nebraska - Shonka Ditch - 4,614,722 lb/yr
- DSM Chemicals North America, Inc. - Georgia - Savannah River - 4,527,472 lb/yr
- Tyson Fresh Meats, Inc. - Nebraska - Tricounty Canal - 3,386,162 lb/yr
- Tyson Fresh Meats, Inc. - Illinois - Rock River - 3,290,330 lb/yr
- North American Stainless - Kentucky - Ohio River - 3,206,744 lb/yr
It’s important to note that the vast majority—if not all—of these releases are perfectly legal. I reached out to all of the companies on the list above and received a response from several. They all basically told me the same thing: “All discharges meet permit requirements,” Cargill said. “This is a natural process that is fully licensed, and included as part of our wastewater discharge reporting,” echoed McCain Foods.