Water Treatment Plants Monitor Styrene Spill Upriver

Water treatment plants along the Ohio River are monitoring the river for styrene following a spill this (Friday) morning near Chester, West Virginia.

The Ohio River Valley Sanitation Commission is working with the West Virginia Department of Environmental Protection to determine how much styrene was spilled into the river. Styrene is primarily used in the manufacture of polystyrene plastics and resins. Short-term exposure may result in mucous membrane, eye irritation, and gastrointestinal effects. Chronic exposure results in effects on the central nervous system.

Several epidemiologic studies suggest there may be an association between styrene exposure and an increased risk of leukemia and lymphoma. However, the USEPA says the evidence is inconclusive.

Styrene is a colorless liquid that has a sweet smell.

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About Callie Lyons

RCNN Publisher and Editor Callie Lyons is an independent journalist and author living in the Mid Ohio Valley. Her first book, Stain-Resistant, Nonstick, Waterproof and Lethal: The Hidden Dangers of C8, is available at Amazon.com and in hundreds of libraries all over the world. Known as a "warrior for public health", Lyons' environmental investigations have been featured in documentaries, including Good Neighbors - Bad Blood and Toxic Soup, on Swedish National Television and in numbers of television, radio and print media interviews. Her work has appeared on Nova's Whiz Kids and in Mother Jones magazine. More recently, a national audience has come to know her award-winning investigative work through the Environmental Working Group and interviews with leading publications like the Huffington Post. According to Dr. Arlene Blum of UC Berkeley, Lyons' first book provided the inspiration for the Madrid Statement, which documents the scientific consensus regarding the persistence and potential for harm of poly- and perfluoroalkyl substances like PFOA and lays out a roadmap to gather needed information and prevent further harm. In 2006, Lyons received the Associated Press of Ohio Award for Best Business Writer. In 2007, Ohio Citizen Action presented Lyons with the Uncovering the Truth Award for her environmental journalism. In 2015, the Marietta 9-12 Project awarded Lyons the Freedom Pin for her commitment to democracy and free press.
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