GEPA to test for Agent Orange at the Ordot Dump, various military sites
GEPA says if any samples come up positive for Agent Orange, they will push for “cleanup and compensation.”
Guam - The Guam EPA is moving forward with plans to test certain military owned areas as well as the Ordot Dump to find out if the herbicide Agent Orange was ever used on Guam.
Guam EPA administrator Walter Leon Guerrero says he is working with Department of Defense officials on testing soil alongside sites suggested to them by a small group of veterans, including retired Air Force Master Sergeant LeRoy Foster, who first spoke out about using Agent Orange on Guam. Leon Guerrero also says the Guam Waterworks Authority will be conducting water sampling on various production wells to find out if any traces of the herbicide in main water production wells.
Guam EPA has already conducted routine testing of monitoring wells on Anderson Air Force Base. Leon Guerrero says there will be a total of 14 wells tested. But access to DoD sites are not guaranteed as the military has denied the use of Agent Orange on Guam saying they have no records to verify. In a letter to governor Eddie Calvo, Leon Guerrero says “I know there are concerns within the administration with regards to DOD access, but we have managed this in the past and will adhere to the same process.” Gov. Calvo was asked if he still shared those concerns about access to the base for soil sampling and water sampling.
“The communication between EPA and the Department of Defense and the Joint Region Marianas have been very cordial and working in the spirit of harmony. So, you know as things have moved along. I think things are moving in the right direction. They are granting access to all areas where there may be concern, where we have to take these test,” says Calvo.
Gov. Calvo has instructed Leon Guerrero to work with the court and the receiver to find out if any potential contamination could have occurred at the Ordot Dump. Leon Guerrero says if any samples come up positive for Agent Orange, Guam EPA will push for “cleanup and compensation.”