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Too “Hot” to Burn? Community Concerns About Proposed Burn Gaining Media Attention

Candelas Glows members at the boundary between Candelas and Rocky Flats where Fish & Wildlife want to burn pesky weeds...

Candelas Glows members at the boundary between Candelas and Rocky Flats where Fish & Wildlife want to burn pesky weeds…

Community members along Colorado’s Front Range are bracing themselves for a possible 701-acre fire that US Fish & Wildlife wants to initiate on ex-nuclear SuperFund site, Rocky Flats. Community members as well as local politicians and municipalities are nearly begging Fish and Wildlife to cancel the burn due to fears of contamination. We echo the sentiments, based on the history of the site, the stories we continue to hear from family, neighbors and ex-workers who suffer physically, animals we have known and love who have gotten sick out there, and based on the previous burn that Fish & Wildlife undertook in 2000. Like the City of Arvada, the Town of Superior, the Rocky Flats Stewardship Council, Rocky Mountain Peace and Justice, and the 2,000+ people who have signed this petition, we do not want to breathe in the contaminated smoke that could billow from the site and its notorious high winds, nor do we want the risk of bare topsoil at the site– even if only briefly. That has gotten the media talking about this issue, from the Daily Camera and a host of other papers including the Examiner and Denver Post, to Fox News, to CBS, ABC. We were deeply dismayed at the recent Rocky Flats Stewarship Council Meeting when Fish and Wildlife seemed to say that they want to go ahead with the burn regardless of community outcry, municipality requests to cancel, and a known history of contamination at the site…. including the “hot spots” reported on by the Colorado Department of Public Health & Environment (see below). US Fish and Wildlife has reiterated they will only give 24-hour notice about the burn (as they assess wind patterns and weather). Here’s a little video with one of our awesome leaders, Alesya Casse explaining some of this in 50 seconds or less. Notice we do not advocate bringing goats onto the land to mitigate for weeds. We think solutions need to be vetted by scientists, officials and community members. Until then, let’s leave the site alone! Please take a moment to help spread the word. Thanks to the Daily Camera for the picture and video .

Click here to see CDPHE data: Pu in SW portion of RFNWR-1.jpg

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Denver Post Article on Candelas Glows & Rocky Flats concerns

Denver Post Article on Candelas Glows & Rocky Flats concerns

Sunday’s Denver Post (2/9/14) featured an article on community concerns about Colorado’s controversial developments surrounding Rocky Flats, an infamous former nuclear weapons plant. The coverage is important because much of the housing developments have occurred without much public debate. Many neighbors, ex-workers, and people in the know shake their heads or have conversations about their surprise, dismay, or worries, in fact those conversations helped spark “Candelas Glows.” The controversy has largely flown under the media radar, however, which could be bad news for new-comers, neighbors, residents and workers.

The release of this article is a good time to reiterate that the concerns here are not just about the families moving into these homes adjacent to Rocky Flats. If the soil is contaminated, then the dust is contaminated and workers are digging in it and kicking it up for folks in Denver, Westminster, Arvada, Broomfield and Superior, etc. to breathe it in. What about workers and neighbors?

One thing still to be adequately covered by the media and authorities include the effects of September’s flooding on the site, both on and below the surface including nearby water, some of which serves as drinking water to nearby communities. Who will have oversight on this land when other natural disasters like the flooding or drought occur? US Fish & Wildlife?! Will they know what to watch out for to protect the public from their “Wildlife Refuge?”

Please take a moment to comment on the article, or better yet, respond through a letter to the editor. It doesn’t have to big or fancy. It’s important that your thoughts be shared– even if you’re not a “professional protester,” scientist or policy maker!

candelasglows@gmail.com