The Gowanus Canal will likely be designated a Superfund site this week, an employee with the Environmental Protection Agency told this paper.
“If you asked me to put money on it, I think they will announce on Thursday,” said the person, who was not authorized to speak on behalf of the agency about the controversial designation, and requested anonymity.
But a decision may come even sooner than that.
The EPA will be making an announcement to reporters on Tuesday at 10 a.m., “related to the Gowanus Canal.” No additional information was provided by the agency, nor was an official confirmation provided.
While the employee received no official word about the designation — which has been vehemently opposed by the mayor, along with developers and landowners who say it will stifle development along the polluted waterway for decades — the person said that signs are pointing to an imminent declaration.
“In my heart of hearts, I think it will happen this week,” the EPA employee said.
The EPA typically designates Superfund sites in March and September, and EPA Region 2 Administrator Judith Enck recently said that a decision would come early this month.
Superfund sites compel entities responsible for polluting a site to pay for its clean-up. The agency has said that the cleaning the canal, once a vital cog in the Industrial Revolution, would span 10-12 years.
The agency will host a public meeting regarding the canal on Thursday, March 4, at Public School 58, 330 Smith Street, 7 p.m.