Jul 23 2002


U. S. Sen. Richard C. Shelby (R-Ala.), a member of the Senate Appropriations Committee, announced today subcommittee approval of funding for a health study of polychlorinated biphenyl (PCB) exposure in Anniston.

"This funding will allow the Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry to implement a health study of PCB exposure in Anniston," said Shelby. "This study will be undertaken with community residents and in cooperation with the Alabama Department of Public Health."

The Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry will receive total funding in the amount of $81 million, which will include the funds needed for the PCB study in Anniston.

"The people that live around the Monsanto plant have higher PCB levels than most any other residential population," added Shelby. "Many residents believe that their town has an abnormally high rate of cancer, miscarriages and liver, heart and other ailments that they say can be traced to Monsanto's PCB production. To date, a comprehensive study of the illness rates in Anniston residents has not been conducted. I think that is a failure of the system. I cannot believe that we would continue to work towards a clean-up, monitor groundwater, surface water and soil composition and never once ask how all of this is effecting the health of the citizens that live there."

"I believe that it is imperative to conduct a comprehensive health study for the residents of Anniston, Alabama," said Shelby. "Without this information, without the best science and information available, we will continue to make bad decisions and bad choices for the people of Anniston."

This funding was included in the VA/HUD and Independent Agencies Appropriations bill for Fiscal Year 2003.