Samoan village appeals to US military for clean-up help
People from the American Samoa village of Aua have made it known to the US Army Corps of Engineers that they want their lands cleaned of leftover fuel from when the Navy had fuel tanks there.
The Commander of the US Army Corps of Engineers, Lieutenant Colonel James Hoyman and a team of seven, have been in the territory looking at sites that the military used.
The American Samoa Power Authority has said that because of the seepage of oil at the site where the naval tanks used to be, any infrastructure or utility projects in the area would require a lot more funding.
ASPA has asked that the Department of Defense provide funding to mitigate the contamination.
But the US Army Corps has said no evidence to prove ASPA's position.
At an ava ceremony hosted by the village for Lt.Col Hoyman, Aua chiefs said they were anxious to have their lands cleaned up and appealed to the US Army Corps for help.
Lt. Col Hoyman said his team had travelled to Aua at the request of Congresswoman Aumua Amata, who personally requested they revisit the issue.
"The Congresswoman asked us to come out and investigate some of the anecdotal evidence of children that were swimming in the water and had oil on their bodies," he said.
"We wanted to see what we could find and talk to the different individuals.
"We have responsibility for the former use of the sites and although we have remediated in the past, it is something we wanted to make sure we are managing appropriately."