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Thursday, October 22, 2009 - 9:26am

Environmental Report Shows High Levels of Toxic Pollution In Savannah River

A report released today by Environment Georgia says the Savannah River is the most polluted river in the state and among the most polluted in the country.

The report used data from the EPA’s Toxics Release Inventory to analyze levels of dangerous chemicals found in Georgia’s waterways. That data showed that industrial facilities dumped more than 7 million pounds of toxins into the Savannah River in 2007.

More than 38,000 pounds of those chemicals are known to cause cancer.

According to the report, the number one polluter in the state that year was DSM Chemicals in Augusta. That company makes raw materials for plastics and dumped more than 3 million pounds of toxic waste into the Savannah river.

Environment Georgia spokesperson Emily Thomas says those levels are legal, but her group believes they're too high.

"The whole point of the Toxic Inventory is to ultimately ratchet down the amount of toxic pollution that is being put into rivers and it doesn’t seem to be the case that they are trying to diminish their impact on our waterways at all," Thomas said.

The study showed Georgia ranking 7th in the nation for toxic pollution in 2007.